William Cowper

(26 November 1731 – 25 April 1800 / Hertfordshire)

The Poplar Field - Poem by William Cowper

The poplars are felled, farewell to the shade
And the whispering sound of the cool colonnade:
The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves,
Nor Ouse on his bosom their image receives.

Twelve years have elapsed since I first took a view
Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew,
And now in the grass behold they are laid,
And the tree is my seat that once lent me a shade.

The blackbird has fled to another retreat
Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat;
And the scene where his melody charmed me before
Resounds with his sweet-flowing ditty no more.

My fugitive years are all hasting away,
And I must ere long lie as lowly as they,
With a turf on my breast and a stone at my head,
Ere another such grove shall arise in its stead.

'Tis a sight to engage me, if anything can,
To muse on the perishing pleasures of man;
Short-lived as we are, our enjoyments, I see,
Have a still shorter date, and die sooner than we.


Comments about The Poplar Field by William Cowper

  • gopinath che (5/1/2019 2:37:00 PM)

    beautiful always in memories (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Ian Fraser (12/31/2018 7:21:00 PM)

    I think you mean not so good. I have to disagree. The Cowper's simple classical style is a sharp contrast to the rather overwrought Hopkins and more effective for that. Also the unusual use of the rapid anapaestic rhythm works surprisingly well compared to the rather stumbling Hopkins. (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • john irvine (8/10/2018 1:55:00 PM)

    a good poem but so good as Hopkins' Binsey Poplars. (Report)Reply

    Ian Fraser(12/31/2018 7:14:00 PM)

    I think you mean not so good. I have never read the Hopkins, so will do so now.

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
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Read poems about / on: farewell, tree, wind



Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003



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