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An Old Lesson from the Fields
Archibald Lampman


Even as I watched the daylight how it sped
From noon till eve, and saw the light wind pass
In long pale waves across the flashing grass,
And heard through all my dreams, wherever led,
The thin cicada singing overhead,
I felt what joyance all this nature has,
And saw myself made clear as in a glass,
How that my soul was for the most part dead.

Oh, light, I cried, and, heaven, with all your blue,
Oh, earth, with all your sunny fruitfulness,
And ye, tall lilies, of the wind-vexed field,
What power and beauty life indeed might yield,
Could we but cast away its conscious stress,
Simple of heart, becoming even as you.

This poem is in the public domain.


Archibald Lampman (1861 - 1899) was a Canadian poet who is often compared to America's Henry David Thoreau. Born and raised in Ontario and drawn to nature from an early age, Archibald was an excellent student but a bout with rheumatic fever left him in less than robust health. He taught briefly before taking a position as a post office clerk, a job he held till his death at the age of 37 from a heart condition caused from his childhood illness. Archibald began writing poetry during his college days, and saw his work published in Canadian, American, and British publications. He wrote three books and is respected today as one of Canada's finest poets.




Post New Comment:
Posted 09/11/2021 04:19 AM
Beautiful thoughts; lovely poetry. This has been todays morning meditation. Thank you, Jayne, for sharing it.
Posted 09/09/2021 11:36 AM
The good die young.
Posted 09/09/2021 11:31 AM
Yes! This is poetry!
Posted 09/09/2021 10:48 AM
michael escoubas:
Really like the fusion of the visible natural world and the inner invisible world of the human spirit. What treasures these classical poets give us.
Posted 09/09/2021 10:06 AM
Pretty powerful line: How that my soul was for the most part dead.
Posted 09/09/2021 10:04 AM
What is to be said but only the word LOVELY for this poem and for the intelligent man who wrote it.
Posted 09/09/2021 08:14 AM

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