Gilbert Keith Chesterton
The Rolling English Road
Before the Roman came to Rye or out to Severn strode,
The rolling English drunkard made the rolling English road.
A reeling road, a rolling road, that rambles round the shire,
And after him the parson ran, the sexton and the squire;
A merry road, a mazy road, and such as we did tread
The night we went to Birmingham by way of Beachy Head.
I knew no harm of Bonaparte and plenty of the Squire,
And for to fight the Frenchman I did not much desire;
But I did bash their baggonets because they came arrayed
To straighten out the crooked road an English drunkard made,
Where you and I went down the lane with ale-mugs in our hands,
The night we went to Glastonbury by way of Goodwin Sands.
His sins they were forgiven him; or why do flowers run
Behind him; and the hedges all strengthening in the sun?
The wild thing went from left to right and knew not which was which,
But the wild rose was above him when they found him in the ditch.
God pardon us, nor harden us; we did not see so clear
The night we went to Bannockburn by way of Brighton Pier.
My friends, we will not go again or ape an ancient rage,
Or stretch the folly of our youth to be the shame of age,
But walk with clearer eyes and ears this path that wandereth,
And see undrugged in evening light the decent inn of death;
For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen,
Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green.
Gilbert Keith Chesterton's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (The Rolling English Road by Gilbert Keith Chesterton )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941)
(31 March 1934 – 31 May 2009)
(16 April 1918 – 27 February 2002)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(January 30, 1935 – September 14, 1984)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
- A Child's Christmas in Wales, Dylan Thomas
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- All the World's a Stage, William Shakespeare
- Christmas Trees, Robert Frost
- Best Friend (In Hindi), Tavneet Singh
- Small-scale Reflections On A Great House, Ramesh Iyengar
- The Shoelace, Charles Bukowski
Poem of the Day
- Toronto, J.S. Campbell
- Unread Lines of My Existence, Sierra Staten
- The Guilt Trip, David Lewis Paget
- Ambrosia, Gaby Bernier
- Music is the bliss., Rm.Shanmugam Chettiar.
- Live while you live., Rm.Shanmugam Chettiar.
- Man dangles without woman., Rm.Shanmugam Chettiar.
- Religion is a recreation., Rm.Shanmugam Chettiar.
- I have got my body, gajanan mishra
- Many Types of Pain, Christina Seyoum