Summons Poem by Robert Francis


Rating: 3.8

Keep me from going to sleep too soon
Or if I go to sleep too soon
Come wake me up. Come any hour
Of night. Come whistling up the road.
Stomp on the porch. Bang on the door.
Make me get out of bed and come
And let you in and light a light.
Tell me the northern lights are on
And make me look. Or tell me clouds
Are doing something to the moon
They never did before, and show me.
See that I see. Talk to me till
I'm half as wide awake as you
And start to dress wondering why
I ever went to bed at all.
Tell me the walking is superb.
Not only tell me but persuade me.
You know I'm not too hard persuaded.

Rob Burns 17 February 2013

I think it is about those people that enter our lives and open the doors. The people who we never expect to come along. We don't plan for the meeting, it is the spontaneous nature of time and chance that puts these people in our lives that they change us, a sea change into something rich and strange.

12 1 Reply
Kiarra Smith 13 June 2007

At Missouri Fine Arts Academy, we tried to analyze this poem. To me, it should be read in an almost mystical way with a soft voice. Though it sounds like death, I personally think it is about inspiration. The sleeping person is ignoring creativity and the beauty of life, yet wants to experience it. That is why the narrator is asking 'Persuade me'. This is shown throughout the poem by the things the narrator wants to see such as the beautiful aurora borealis. They tell them to 'Knock on the porch. Bang on the door' meaning to force them to listen even if they have to shout, 'Look! Look at all of the wonder you are missing! ' They want to see these things before they become a prisoner of their own negativity which is proven in the line 'Keep me from going to sleep too soon.' Of course, this is just my opinion. At the age of 17 now, it could change when I'm 20 or 30.

10 2 Reply
Sylvia Frances Chan 20 August 2022

Magificently responded, dear Kiarra, you were 17, now you are 32, but I think your opinion about this poem is still the same, since my opinion is like that too and I am much much older than you. Thank you!

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Kanniappan Kanniappan 19 September 2013

Is it for lazy people to wake up early for walking as exercise, in the health point of view?

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Susan Folkes 09 July 2008

I'm with Zack - sort of - I think it's being in love with life. It reminds me of a time in Manila when the meteorite shower went on from about 2: 00 am until 5: 00 am. My friend and I had gone to bed, having had a good evening out and feeling tired. We had decided not to join our friends on the top of a skyscraper to watch the promised spectacle. One of our friends came bashing on the door at 1: 00 am until we woke up and we dressed and travelled to the top of the tower to watch. We lay on our backs watching the cosmic fireworks until morning. A night never forgotten, and shared with friends. It's a message not to take life for granted, a desire to share special moments.

6 2 Reply
Sylvia Frances Chan 20 August 2022

I cite here SUSAN FOLKES last line in her response: It's a message not to take life for granted, a desire to share special moments.5 Stars for this precious poem

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Lakyn Strutton 03 April 2018

I see this poem as a plea for help from someone who would rather not impose on another but desperately needs someone to 'right' his/her sinking outlook on the world. The final line shows the narrator's loss of confidence/hope in herself yet also reveals the existence of hope he/she has in another's aid. Also, note the command in the previous line, indicating a slight, albeit modest, sense of urgency in the narrator's words.

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Dr.subhendu Kar 20 March 2017

See that I see. Talk to me till I'm half as wide awake as you Good write!

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Hebert Logerie Sr. 27 January 2017

You know I am not too hard persuaded. Beautifully said.The poem flows like a river to reach its destination timely, as planned.

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Kay Staley 19 September 2014

This could be about practically anything. I like to think that the author is worried about falling asleep in life and missing all the things that matter. He is worried that he is only half awake and that the world is persuading him to see only parts of his environment and not letting him be truly alive. I like stuff like this but its truly a shame that this doesnt rhyme.

7 2 Reply
Robert Francis

Robert Francis

Pennsylvania / United States
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