Charles Kingsley

(12 June 1819 – 23 January 1875 / Devon, England)

A Farewell - Poem by Charles Kingsley



My fairest child, I have no song to give you;
No lark could pipe to skies so dull and grey:
Yet, ere we part, one lesson I can leave you
For every day.


Be good, sweet maid, and let who will be clever;
Do noble things, not dream them, all day long:
And so make life, death, and that vast for-ever
One grand, sweet song.

Topic(s) of this poem: farewell

Comments about A Farewell by Charles Kingsley

  • (2/24/2016 2:40:00 PM)

    Never mind your wishes
    Just go and wash the dishes
    (Don't know how to correct the errors this iPad insists upon making)
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  • (2/24/2016 2:35:00 PM)

    Let me defend the dreamer. For me this is a poem counsel of despair:
    (Report) Reply

  • Mohammed Asim Nehal (2/16/2016 2:36:00 PM)

    Sweet song, indeed....enjoyed your farewell note, (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (12/18/2015 1:49:00 PM)

    The greatest wish a father could have for his child- that the child live his morals not merely mouth them (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga (12/18/2015 11:11:00 AM)

    In a very simple yet lovely style the poet has put across the message of Christmas in this poem.
    Do noble things, not dream them, all day long:
    And so make life..... One grand, sweet song.
    (Report) Reply

  • Sossi Khachadourian (12/14/2014 12:09:00 PM)

    Do noble things, not dream them, all day long:
    How kind words and precious advice!
    (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2014 9:48:00 AM)

    A great message for doing good things and likes the poem. (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2014 12:27:00 AM)

    I agree with the part on doing good being a great song.......but don't we have to dream good things in order to do good things.... (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2014 12:23:00 AM)

    Maybe I'm misreading this......the first part contains an insult to the object of the poem....a person he seems to be comparing to gray dull skies.......then toward the end an insult to poets in general.....who are often said to be dreamers.....who are of no earthly me (Report) Reply

  • Abdelrahman Elawad (12/14/2012 2:38:00 PM)

    Nice poem.. It is wonderful.. I liked it... (Report) Reply

  • Abdelrahman Elawad (12/14/2012 2:36:00 PM)

    Nice poem.. it is wonderful.. I liked it... (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2011 12:47:00 PM)

    poet wonderfully sums up most things in minimum context.. good one (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2011 5:31:00 AM)

    Sweet words for sweet fairy child are presented in the most unique way. Simple graceful words ironically defeat the virus intellectualism in the most subtle way. Great write! (Report) Reply

  • Pranab K Chakraborty (12/14/2011 4:59:00 AM)

    Brilliant to cross the intelligent ambushes. Much polite to combat arrogant...way of ignoring is unique for the generations who want to materialise the truths to life. Nice indeed. (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2010 7:03:00 AM)

    As a schoolboy I had to read some of his poems in my English texts.All his poems were quite accessible to us children. The reason is plain o see - simplicity of presentation and reasoning and easily voiced rhymes. It is not that the British mistrusted intellectuals - some of the greatest post-renaissance intellectuals have been British - but they were generally wary of irrelevant and overweening sophistry. The epithet 'too clever by half' was reserved for people with such predilections. The freedom of expression was nowhere better practised than in England. (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2009 7:41:00 PM)

    I love this style of writing - simple, and speaks of simple things, but explains a lot about living. (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2009 12:57:00 PM)

    It's beyond me that 'A Farewell' constitutes a summary of British attitudes about intellectuals, but then I'm an American, so what do I know about things English?
    By the way, Shakespeare was truly a literary genius - his star outshone those of Newton and Darwin (?) and whomever you admire!
    (Report) Reply

  • (12/14/2009 12:37:00 PM)

    Love it, it is simply beautiful. (Report) Reply

  • Kevin Straw (12/14/2009 4:51:00 AM)

    Summarises the suspicion the English hold for the intellectual. One of their put-downs is 'He is too clever by half'. Yet it did not prevent Shakespeare, Newton and Darwin to appear mysteriously in their midst! (Report) Reply

  • Ramesh T A (12/14/2009 1:55:00 AM)

    Live a sweet song life doing noble things without dreaming all day long! This is the wonderful message of the poem that makes it great! (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: song, child, dream, death, farewell, life, sky, children

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

Poem Edited: Wednesday, January 7, 2015

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