Edward Thomas

(3 March 1878 - 9 April 1917 / London / England)

The Cuckoo - Poem by Edward Thomas

That's the cuckoo, you say. I cannot hear it.
When last I heard it I cannot recall; but I know
Too well the year when first I failed to hear it -
It was drowned by my man groaning out to his sheep 'Ho! Ho!'

Ten times with an angry voice he shouted
'Ho! Ho!' but not in anger, for that was his way.
He died that Summer, and that is how I remember
The cuckoo calling, the children listening, and me saying 'Nay'.

And now, as you said, 'There it is', I was hearing
Not the cuckoo at all, but my man's 'Ho! Ho!' instead.
And I think that even if I could lose my deafness
The cuckoo's note would be drowned by the voice of my dead.


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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 7, 2010



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