Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Favourite Winter Poems

I thought I'd share two of my very favourite winter poems with you today.

The first one is very evocative of primary school days as we had to learn it verbatim for a performance.  This was probably my first experience of  Shakespeare! I can still see my old teacher, Mrs Williams - a plump and jolly Welsh woman with a shock of of curly black hair and a benign expression, nodding her head as we chanted along.  Funny how things stick in your head isn't it?!   I think it struck a chord with me as its a little 'dark' - I always thought it was a bit of a spooky poem!!


(From "Love's Labour's Lost")
When icicles hang by the wall,
    And Dick the shepherd blows his nail,
And Tom bears logs into the hall,
    And milk comes frozen home in pail,
When blood is nipp’d and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,
Tu-who, a merry note,
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

When all aloud the wind doth blow,
    And coughing drowns the parson’s saw,
And birds sit brooding in the snow,
    And Marion’s nose looks red and raw,
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,
Tu-who, a merry note,
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

The next one is by Robert Frost.  I stumbled across it in a Jilly Cooper novel of all places and 
was struck by it.  I really don't know why -  all I know is that the last three lines make my heart 

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village, though; He will not see me stopping here To watch his woods fill up with snow. My little horse must think it queer To stop without a farmhouse near Between the woods and frozen lake The darkest evening of the year. He gives his harness bells a shake To ask if there is some mistake. The only other sound's the sweep Of easy wind and downy flake. The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep. 

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