Poems founded on the Affections: The Childless Father. William Wordsworth – 1800.


Play an audio version of this poem.

"Up, Timothy, up with your Staff and away!
Not a soul in the village this morning will stay;
The Hare has just started from Hamilton's grounds,
And Skiddaw is glad with the cry of the hounds."

Of coats and of jackets gray, scarlet, and green,
On the slopes of the pastures all colours were seen;
With their comely blue aprons, and caps white as snow,
The Girls on the hills made a holiday show.

The bason of box-wood, just six months before,
Had stood on the table at Timothy's door;
A Coffin through Timothy's threshold had past;
One Child did it bear, and that Child was his last.

Now fast up the dell came the noise and the fray,
The horse and the horn, and the hark! hark away!
Old Timothy took up his staff, and he shut
With a leisurely motion the door of his hut.

Perhaps to himself at that moment he said,
"The key I must take, for my Ellen is dead."
But of this in my ears not a word did he speak,
And he went to the chase with a tear on his cheek.

Poet's Corner

Like so many, my first contact with poetry was at school. In my teens I tried my hand at poetry and found that I rather enjoyed it. As a musician, poetry enabled me to write songs - really cool to be a teenager and strumming out your own songs (badly in my case) on the guitar. I decided to build this site alongside a corresponding YouTube channel (Poets' Corner) and include both a narrated version of each poem along with the printed version. Having always loved (and many times visited) The Lake District in northwest England it seemed only right to start with Wiliam Wordsworth and, once I've created a significant body of his work, I'll start working on other poets.

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