William Henry Davies

(3 July 1871 – 26 September 1940 / Monmouthshire / Wales)

Joy and Pleasure


Now, joy is born of parents poor,
And pleasure of our richer kind;
Though pleasure's free, she cannot sing
As sweet a song as joy confined.

Pleasure's a Moth, that sleeps by day
And dances by false glare at night;
But Joy's a Butterfly, that loves
To spread its wings in Nature's light.

Joy's like a Bee that gently sucks
Away on blossoms its sweet hour;
But pleasure's like a greedy Wasp,
That plums and cherries would devour.

Joy's like a Lark that lives alone,
Whose ties are very strong, though few;
But Pleasure like a Cuckoo roams,
Makes much acquaintance, no friends true.

Joy from her heart doth sing at home,
With little care if others hear;
But pleasure then is cold and dumb,
And sings and laughs with strangers near.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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  • Rookie H. Balasubramanian (6/3/2010 3:03:00 AM)

    This was one of the three poems of Davies prescribed for my graduation, . I read it in 1968. Now after service retirement and SWEET STAY AT HOME, I wanted to go through his poems again. My hunt ended in Poet Hunter, which is treasure island of poems. Great service. Thank the managers. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Sylva Portoian (2/26/2010 2:17:00 AM)

    Davies, it seems when I read your poems
    I can stimulate my senses forever.
    With your poem, Joy and Pleasure
    You’re differentiating between joy of poor in wealth
    and pleasure of rich in a very truthful manner—
    Joy is deeper in sense than pleasure,
    Pleasure disappears but joy, never. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Neil O (7/18/2006 7:33:00 PM)

    Good poem, simply yet philosophic in theme. Not grand but loveable and touching. (Report) Reply

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