Learn More

Robert William Service

(16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)

Insomnia


Heigh ho! to sleep I vainly try;
Since twelve I haven't closed an eye,
And now it's three, and as I lie,
From Notre Dame to St. Denis
The bells of Paris chime to me;
"You're young," they say, "and strong and free."

I do not turn with sighs and groans
To ease my limbs, to rest my bones,
As if my bed were stuffed with stones,
No peevish murmur tips my tongue --
Ah no! for every sound upflung
Says: "Lad, you're free and strong and young."

And so beneath the sheet's caress
My body purrs with happiness;
Joy bubbles in my veins. . . . Ah yes,
My very blood that leaps along
Is chiming in a joyous song,
Because I'm young and free and strong.

Maybe it is the springtide. I am so happy I am afraid.
The sense of living fills me with exultation. I want to sing,
to dance; I am dithyrambic with delight.

I think the moon must be to blame:
It fills the room with fairy flame;
It paints the wall, it seems to pour
A dappled flood upon the floor.
I rise and through the window stare . . .
Ye gods! how marvelously fair!
From Montrouge to the Martyr's Hill,
A silver city rapt and still;
Dim, drowsy deeps of opal haze,
And spire and dome in diamond blaze;
The little lisping leaves of spring
Like sequins softly glimmering;
Each roof a plaque of argent sheen,
A gauzy gulf the space between;
Each chimney-top a thing of grace,
Where merry moonbeams prank and chase;
And all that sordid was and mean,
Just Beauty, deathless and serene.

O magic city of a dream!
From glory unto glory gleam;
And I will gaze and pity those
Who on their pillows drowse and doze . . .
And as I've nothing else to do,
Of tea I'll make a rousing brew,
And coax my pipes until they croon,
And chant a ditty to the moon.

There! my tea is black and strong. Inspiration comes with
every sip. Now for the moon.

The moon peeped out behind the hill
As yellow as an apricot;
Then up and up it climbed until
Into the sky it fairly got;
The sky was vast and violet;
The poor moon seemed to faint in fright,
And pale it grew and paler yet,
Like fine old silver, rinsed and bright.
And yet it climbed so bravely on
Until it mounted heaven-high;
Then earthward it serenely shone,
A silver sovereign of the sky,
A bland sultana of the night,
Surveying realms of lily light.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: moon, silver, city, paris, inspiration, fairy, sky, magic, happiness, dance, spring, happy, song, sleep, beauty, dream, joy, heaven, light, rose

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Insomnia by Robert William Service )

Enter the verification code :

Read all 2 comments »

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. The Saddest Poem, Pablo Neruda
  2. Winter Solstice, Jacqueline C Nash
  3. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  4. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  5. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  6. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
  7. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
  8. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  9. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
  10. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe

Poem of the Day

poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti

A little while a little love
The hour yet bears for thee and me
Who have not drawn the veil to see
If still our heaven be lit above.
Thou merely, at the day's last sigh,
...... Read complete »

   

New Poems

  1. You will find, hasmukh amathalal
  2. Bale Visions, Adeosun Olamide
  3. The good theme, hasmukh amathalal
  4. Whatever The Outcome, Lawrence S. Pertillar
  5. I'm Scared Without You, Michael P. McParland
  6. Stars, Jordan Myrie
  7. farewell; to the lost love, ademola oluwabusayo
  8. I'll Always, Michael P. McParland
  9. Have Faith, Michael P. McParland
  10. Grace Me, Michael P. McParland
[Hata Bildir]