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The Fairies

 

 

 

William Allingham

(1824- 1889)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Up the airy mountain

Down the rushy glen,

We dare n't go a-hunting,

For fear of little men;

Wee folk, good folk,

Trooping all together;

Green jacket, red cap,

And white owl's feather.

Down along the rocky shore

Some make their home,

They live on crispy pancakes

Of yellow tide-foam;

Some in the reeds

Of the black mountain-lake,

With frogs for their watch-dogs,

All night awake.

 

High on the hill-top

The old King sits;

He is now so old and gray

He's nigh lost his wits.

With a bridge of white mist

Columbkill he crosses,

On his stately journeys

From Slieveleague to Rosses;

Or going up with music,

On cold starry nights,

To sup with the Queen,

Of the gay Northern Lights.

 

They stole little Bridget

For seven years long;

When she came down again

Her friends were all gone.

They took her lightly back

Between the night and morrow;

They thought she was fast asleep,

But she was dead with sorrow.

They have kept her ever since

Deep within the lake,

On a bed of flag leaves,

Watching till she wake.

 

By the craggy hill-side,

Through the mosses bare,

They have planted thorn trees

For pleasure here and there.

Is any man so daring

As dig them up in spite?

He shall find the thornies set

In his bed at night.

 

Up the airy mountain

Down the rushy glen,

We dare n't go a-hunting,

For fear of little men;

Wee folk, good folk,

Trooping all together;

Green jacket, red cap,

And white owl's feather.

 

love this one. used to frighten me to death as a child though!

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Woah! creepy poem TLC! that'd frightened me to death if i'd heared that as a kid!

 

 

suppose i should've posted my favourite too - here goes...

 

 

THE RAVEN.

 

 

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,

While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,

As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.

"'T is some visiter," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door--

Only this, and nothing more."

 

 

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December,

And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.

Eagerly I wished the morrow:--vainly I had sought to borrow

From my books surcease of sorrow--sorrow for the lost Lenore--

For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore--

Nameless here for evermore.

 

 

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain

Thrilled me--filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;

So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating

"'T is some visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door

Some late visiter entreating entrance at my chamber door;--

This it is, and nothing more."

 

 

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,

"Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;

But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,

And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,

That I scarce was sure I heard you"--here I opened wide the door;--

Darkness there, and nothing more.

 

 

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,

Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;

But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,

And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore!"

This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore!"

Merely this and nothing more.

 

 

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,

Soon again I heard a tapping, somewhat louder than before.

"Surely," said I, "surely that is something at my window lattice;

Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore--

Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;--

'T is the wind and nothing more!"

 

 

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,

In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore.

Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;

But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door--

Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door--

Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

 

 

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,

By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,

"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou," I said, "art sure no craven,

Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore,--

Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!"

Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

 

 

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,

Though its answer little meaning--little relevancy bore;

For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being

Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door--

Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,

With such name as "Nevermore."

 

 

But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only

That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.

Nothing further then he uttered--not a feather then he fluttered--

Till I scarcely more than muttered, "Other friends have flown before--

On the morrow _he_ will leave me, as my hopes have flown before."

Then the bird said, "Nevermore."

 

 

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,

"Doubtless," said I, "what it utters is its only stock and store,

Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster

Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore--

Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore

Of 'Never--nevermore.'"

 

 

But the Raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,

Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door;

Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking

Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore--

What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird of yore

Meant in croaking "Nevermore."

 

 

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing

To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom's core;

This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining

On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamplight gloated o'er,

But whose velvet violet lining with the lamplight gloating o'er

_She_ shall press, ah, nevermore!

 

 

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer

Swung by seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.

"Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee--by these angels he hath sent thee

Respite--respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!

Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost Lenore!"

Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

 

 

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil!--

Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,

Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted--

On this home by Horror haunted--tell me truly, I implore--

Is there--_is_ there balm in Gilead?--tell me--tell me, I implore!"

Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

 

 

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil--prophet still, if bird or devil!

By that Heaven that bends above, us--by that God we both adore--

Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,

It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore--

Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore."

Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

 

 

"Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!" I shrieked, upstarting--

"Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!

Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!

Leave my loneliness unbroken!--quit the bust above my door!

Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!"

Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

 

 

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting

On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;

And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,

And the lamplight o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;

And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor

Shall be lifted--nevermore!

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must say that the raven is also one of my favourites. first time i heard it all through it was being read by Vincent Price, really sent a chill down my spine i can tell you.

 

managed to download a copy into word and ran it through the text to speach engine. was hilarious listening to the pronunciation.

 

strange thing is i had on video a film called the raven that starred Vincent Price,Boris Karloff and Peter LOrre. there was a young up and coming actor who played the part of a magician. Jack Nicholson.

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Too many poets like e.e. cummings:

 

if there are any heavens my mother will (all by herself) have one.

It will not be a pansy heaven nor a fragile heaven of lilies-of-the-valley but

it will be a heaven of blackred roses

my father will be (deep like a rose tall like a rose) standing near my (swaying over her silent)

with eyes which are really petals and see

nothing with the face of a poet really which

is a flower and not a face with hands

which whisper

This is my beloved my

(suddenly in sunlight he will bow, & the whole garden will bow)

 

Or Yeats:

 

When you are old and gray and full of sleep,

And nodding by the fire, take down this book,

And slowly read, and dream of the soft look

Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

 

How many loved your moments of glad grace,

And loved your beauty with love false or true;

But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,

And loved the sorrows of your changing face.

 

And bending down beside the glowing bars

Murmur, a little sadly, how love fled

And paced upon the mountains overhead

And his his face amid a crowd of stars.

 

Or Einore Wylie:

 

Poets make pets of pretty, docile words:

I love smooth words, like gold-enamelled fish

Which circle slowly with a silken swish,

And tender ones, like downy-feathered birds:

Words shy and dappled, deep-eyed deer in herds,

Come to my hand, and playful if I wish,

Or purring softly at a silver dish,

Blue Persian kittens fed on cream and curds.

 

I love bright words, words up and singing early;

Words that are luminous in the dark, and sing;

Warm lazy words, white cattle under trees;

I love words opalescent, cool, and pearly,

Like midsummer moths, and honied words like bees,

Gilded and sticky, with a little sting.

 

Or Robert Burns:

 

Oh my luve is like a red, red rose,

That's newly sprung in June:

Oh my luve is like the melodie,

That's sweetly play'd in tune.

 

As fair art thou, my bonie lass,

So deep in luve am I;

And I will luve thee still, my dear,

Till a' the seas gang dry.

 

Till a' the seas gang dry, my dear,

And the rocks melt wi' the sun;

And I will luve thee still, my dear,

While the sands o' life shall run.

 

And fare thee weel, my only luve!

And fare thee weel a while!

And I will come again, my luve,

Tho' it were ten thousand mile!

 

And of course Evil Sid has a few I really like too!!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Most stuff by Sylvia Plath but this one A young girl's love song - or something like that is very powerful.

 

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;

I lift my lids and all is born again.

(I think I made you up inside my head.)

 

The stars go waltzing out in blue and red,

And arbitrary blackness gallops in:

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

 

I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed

And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.

(I think I made you up inside my head.)

 

God topples from the sky, hell?s fires fade:

Exit seraphim and Satan?s men:

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

 

I fancied you?d return the way you said,

But I grow old and I forget your name.

(I think I made you up inside my head.)

 

I should have loved a thunderbird instead;

At least when spring comes they roar back again.

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

(I think I made you up inside my head.)

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  • 3 weeks later...

OK, I can't argue with anyone who prefers the RAVEN or any Kipling such as Gunga Din. But two that grabbed me with chills were Little Boy Blue - The little tin soldier is covered with dust, but sturdy and staunch he stands. AND, The Highwayman -- the highwayman came riding, riding, riding up to the old inn door. And a German poem about a father racing on a sled to get his son to a doctor, and the son sees wolves in the shadows... And a Russian poet who was forced to suicide by Stalin, "I spent a year at her black skirts..." and also proclaims that he is such a giant that he strides through the seas and there is no one that can ... oh, I forget.

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