Francis Thompson

(16 December 1859 – 13 November 1907 / Preston, England)

A May Burden


Though meadow-ways as I did tread,
The corn grew in great lustihead,
And hey! the beeches burgeoned.
By Goddes fay, by Goddes fay!
It is the month, the jolly month,
It is the jolly month of May.

God ripe the wines and corn, I say,
And wenches for the marriage-day,
And boys to teach love's comely play.
By Goddes fay, by Goddes fay!
It is the month, the jolly month,
It is the jolly month of May.

As I went down by lane and lea,
The daisies reddened so, pardie!
'Blushets!' I said, 'I well do see,
By Goddes fay, by Goddes fay!
The thing ye think of in this month,
Heigho! this jolly month of May.'

As down I went by rye and oats,
The blossoms smelt of kisses; throats
Of birds turned kisses into notes;
By Goddes fay, by Goddes fay!
The kiss it is a growing flower,
I trow, this jolly month of May.

God send a mouth to every kiss,
Seeing the blossom of this bliss
By gathering doth grow, certes!
By Goddes fay, by Goddes fay!
Thy brow-garland pushed all aslant
Tells - but I tell not, wanton May!

Submitted: Thursday, April 15, 2010

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