Edith Nesbit

(15 August 1858 – 4 May 1924 / Kennington / Surrey / England)

Faute De Mieux


WHEN the corn is green and the poppies red
And the fields are crimson with love-lies-bleeding,
When the elms are black deep overhead
And the shade lies cool where the calves are feeding,
When the blackbird whistles the song of June,
When kine knee-deep in the pond are drowsing,
Leave pastoral peace--come up through the noon
To the high chalk downs where the sheep are browsing.


Oh! sweet to dream in the noontide heat,
On the scented bed of thyme and clover,
With the air from the sea, blown keen and sweet,
And the wings of the wide sky folded over,
While, far in the blue, the skylark sings,
Renounce desire and renounce endeavour,
Forget life's little unworthy things
And dream that the dream will last for ever.


The love of your life, in your heart's hid shrine,
With its gifts and its torments, leave it sighing,
And I will bury the pain of mine
In the selfsame grave where its joy is lying.
Let me hold your hand for a quiet hour
In the wild thyme's scent and the clear blue weather,
Then come what may, we have plucked one flower,
This hour on the downs alone together.

Submitted: Monday, April 19, 2010

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