The agreeable eye

an eudæmonistarchives


Into my heart an air that kills
    From yon far country blows:
What are those blue remembered hills,
    What spires, what farms are those?

That is the land of lost content,
    I see it shining plain,
The happy highways where I went
    And cannot come again.

(from A Shropshire Lad)

The weeping Pleiads wester,
    And the moon is under seas;
From bourn to bourn of midnight
    Far sighs the rainy breeze:

It sighs from a lost country
    To a land I have not known;
The weeping Pleiads wester,
    And I lie down alone.

                    *   *   *

The rainy Pleiads wester,
    Orion plunges prone,
The stroke of midnight ceases,
    And I lie down alone.

The rainy Pleiads wester
    And seek beyond the sea
The head that I shall dream of,
    And ’twill not dream of me.

(variation on a theme from Sappho,
from More Poems)

Some can gaze and not be sick,
But I could never learn the trick.
There’s this to say for blood and breath,
They give a man a taste for death.

(from Additional Poems)

More of Housman’s poems are available elsewhere; see also the fragment of a Greek tragedy & the (sadly abridged) ‘Application of Thought to Textual Criticism’. Rather unrelated: index to the Housman Society Journal, with the titles – but not the texts – of articles few people have time to read anyway.


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