Alfred Edward Housman

Here you will find the Poem The Merry Guide of poet Alfred Edward Housman

The Merry Guide

Once in the wind of morning 
I ranged the thymy wold; 
The world-wide air was azure 
And all the brooks ran gold. 

There through the dews beside me 
Behold a youth that trod, 
With feathered cap on forehead, 
And poised a golden rod. 

With mien to match the morning 
And gay delightful guise 
And friendly brows and laughter 
He looked me in the eyes. 

Oh whence, I asked, and whither? 
He smiled and would not say. 
And looked at me and beckoned, 
And laughed and led the way. 

And with kind looks and laughter 
And nought to say beside, 
We two went on together, 
I and my happy guide. 

Across the glittering pastures 
And empty upland still 
And solitude of shepherds 
High in the folded hill, 

By hanging woods and hamlets 
That gaze through orchards down 
On many a windmill turning 
And far-discovered town, 

With gay regards of promise 
And sure unslackened stride 
And smiles and nothing spoken 
Led on my merry guide. 

By blowing realms of woodland 
With sunstruck vanes afield 
And cloud-led shadows sailing 
About the windy weald, 

By valley-guarded granges 
And silver waters wide, 
Content at heart I followed 
With my delightful guide. 

And like the cloudy shadows 
Across the country blown 
We two fare on for ever, 
But not we two alone. 

With the great gale we journey 
That breathes from gardens thinned, 
Borne in the drift of blossoms 
Whose petals throng the wind; 

Buoyed on the heaven-ward whisper 
Of dancing leaflets whirled 
From all the woods that autumn 
Bereaves in all the world. 

And midst the fluttering legion 
Of all that ever died 
I follow, and before us 
Goes the delightful guide, 

With lips that brim with laughter 
But never once respond, 
And feet that fly on feathers, 
And serpent-circled wand.