Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

Paradise Street - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

As I was a-walking down Paradise Street,
A bonny young maiden I chanced for to meet;
She gave me good-morning all as I went by,
With lips full of laughter and love in her eye;
'Here's wine in the flagon, and white bread and brown,
And a bright pretty parlour where you may sit down,
And a fiddle to dance to, and friends two or three:
Turn again, turn again, lad from the sea!'

As I was walking down Paradise Street,
The roses and posies, all blushing and sweet,
They bloomed in the gardens and breathed in the air,
A breath that smelt fine as the roses so fair;
They said, 'Oh, young sailor, why go you so soon
Before the flower's open that budded in June?
O stay for to-day, before faded we be:
Turn again, turn again, lad from the sea!'

As I was walking down Paradise Street,
All out of the westward I heard a wind beat,
All out of the sunset so loudly it blew,
It fluttered the flowers in the gardens that grew,
It shook the green shutters and rattled the pane,
And shrill round the gables it whistled amain,
And the smell it came blowing, yes, blowing to me,
From the white flowers that bloom on the fields of the sea.

As I was walking down Paradise Street,
So heavy my heart grew, so weary my feet,
I said, 'I must go, for I hear my friends call,
From the wine and the fiddles and dancing and all;
Oh keep you your white bread and keep you your brown,
And by your fireside let some other sit down,
For I hear a ship calling, yes, calling to me:
'Turn again, turn again, lad, to the sea!''


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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010



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