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William Wordsworth


The minstrels played their Christmas tune
To-night beneath my cottage-eaves;
While, smitten by a lofty moon,
The encircling laurels, thick with leaves,
Gave back a rich and dazzling sheen,
That overpowered their natural green.

Through hill and valley every breeze
Had sunk to rest with folded wings:
Keen was the air, but could not freeze,
Nor check, the music of the strings;
So stout and hardy were the band
That scraped the chords with strenuous hand.

And who but listened?--—till was paid
Respect to every inmate's claim,
The greeting given, the music played
In honour of each household name,
Duly pronounced with lusty call,
And "Merry Christmas" wished to all.

This poem is in the public domain.



William Wordsworth (1770 - 1850) was a British Romantic poet. Though he suffered much tragedy in his personal life, he also enjoyed several deeply satisfying friendships, including ones with fellow poet Samuel Coleridge, and with his sister Dorothy, a writer in her own right. Wordsworth traveled extensively and was deeply influenced by his love of nature; both passions are evident in many of his poems. He lived much of his life in England’s beautiful Lake District, and served as Poet Laureate of England from 1843 until his death.




Post New Comment:
Janet Leahy:
Wonderful rhythm when one reads this poem aloud. Thanks Jayne.
Posted 12/23/2020 10:13 PM
A Jenkin:
Some lovely turn of phrase used.. the breeze... rest on folded wing. Apt choice of poem as well:)
Posted 12/22/2020 03:53 PM
Ah, yes, aptly-named Wordsworth.
Posted 12/22/2020 09:30 AM
Larry Schug:
Would that we still had traveling minstrels going from house to house. There's no reason we can't and wouldn't it be nice during this time of isolation to be visited by a minstrel outside your door? I wish I could sing and play better on my guitar! Thanks for this poem, Jayne. It is perfect for this day.
Posted 12/22/2020 08:54 AM
michael escoubas:
What a lovely, lyrical poem and such craftsmanship, ah yes, the craftsmanship. The poets of this era take us all to school. And the note about the lost meaning of "inmate" is especially appreciated.
Posted 12/22/2020 08:46 AM
Sharon Waller Knutson:
I love Wordsworth. Beautiful imagery and Merry Christmas wishes never go out of style.
Posted 12/22/2020 08:40 AM

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