WH Auden


Villanelle - Poem by WH Auden

Time can say nothing but I told you so,
Time only knows the price we have to pay;
If I could tell you, I would let you know.

If we should weep when clowns put on their show,
If we should stumble when musicians play,
Time can say nothing but I told you so.

There are no fortunes to be told, although
Because I love you more than I can say,
If I could tell you, I would let you know.

The winds must come from somewhere when they blow,
There must be reasons why the leaves decay;
Time can say nothing but I told you so.

Perhaps the roses really want to grow,
The vision seriously intends to stay;
If I could tell you, I would let you know.

Suppose the lions all get up and go,
And all the brooks and soldiers run away?
Time can say nothing but I told you so.
If I could tell you, I would let you know.


Comments about Villanelle by WH Auden

  • (12/10/2012 8:38:00 AM)


    Second last line should be 'Can time say nothing but I told you so? ' (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: time, soldier, wind, rose, running



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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