More about John Clare
John Clare -
Poems Chiefly From Manuscript
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The ivyed oaks dark shadow falls
Oft picking up with wondering gaze
Some little thing of other days
Saved from the wreck of time.
I hid my love in field and town
Till een the breeze would knock me down,
The bees seemed singing ballads oer,
The fly's bass turned a lion's roar;
And even silence found a tongue,
To haunt me all the summer long;
The riddle nature could not prove
Was nothing else but secret love.
I love to see the old heath's withered brake
Mingle its crimpled leaves with furze and ling,
While the old heron from the lonely lake
Starts slow and flaps its melancholy wing
In politics and politicians' lies
The modern farmer waxes wondrous wise;
And what's more wonderful, when big loads foil
One ant or two to carry, quickly then
A swarm flock round to help their fellow-men.
I hid my love when young till I
Couldn't bear the buzzing of a fly;
I hid my love to my despite
Till I could not bear to look at light:
I dare not gaze upon her face
But left her memory in each place;
Where eer I saw a wild flower lie
I kissed and bade my love good bye.
O how I feel, just as I pluck the flower
And stick it to my breast — words can't reveal;
But there are souls that in this lovely hour
Know all I mean, and feel whate'er I feel.
Crowded places, I shunned them as noises too rude / And flew to the silence of sweet solitude.
I never saw so sweet a face. As that I stood before. My heart has left it dwelling place... and can return no more.
Throw not my words away, as many do;
They're gold in value, though they're cheap to you.
When trouble haunts me, need I sigh?
No, rather smile away despair;
This world has suns, but they are overcast;
This world has sweets, but they're of ling'ring bloom;
Life still expects, and empty falls at last;
Warm Hope on tiptoe drops into the tomb.
I am: yet what I am none cares or knows,
My friends forsake me like a memory lost:
I am the self-consumer of my woes,
They rise and vanis in oblivious host,
Like shades in love and death's oblivion lost:
And yet I am, and live with shadows tost
To-morrow comes, true copy of today,
And empty shadow of what is to be;
Yet cheated Hope on future still depends,
And ends but only when our being ends.
Quote of the day
Tonight, the whole world is watching America. I believe at our best America is a beacon for the globe. And we lead not by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.
July 13, 1793
May 20, 1864
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