Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Georgian Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Georgian Verse.  1909.
 
The Poplar Field
By William Cowper (1731–1800)
 
THE POPLARS are felled; farewell to the shade,
And the whispering sound of the cool colonnade;
The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves,
Nor Ouse on his bosom their image receives.
 
Twelve years have elapsed since I first took a view        5
Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew:
And now in the grass behold they are laid,
And the tree is my seat that once lent me a shade!
 
The blackbird has fled to another retreat,
Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat,        10
And the scene where his melody charmed me before
Resounds with his sweet-flowing ditty no more.
 
My fugitive years are all hasting away,
And I must ere long lie as lowly as they,
With a turf on my breast, and a stone at my head,        15
Ere another such grove shall arise in its stead.
 
’Tis a sight to engage me, if anything can,
To muse on the perishing pleasures of man;
Though his life be a dream, his enjoyments, I see,
Have a being less durable even than he.        20
 
 
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