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The Manor Farm

 THE rock-like mud unfroze a little, and rills 
Ran and sparkled down each side of the road 
Under the catkins wagging in the hedge.
But earth would have her sleep out, spite of the sun; Nor did I value that thin gliding beam More than a pretty February thing Till I came down to the old manor farm, And church and yew-tree opposite, in age Its equals and in size.
The church and yew And farmhouse slept in a Sunday silentness.
The air raised not a straw.
The steep farm roof, With tiles duskily glowing, entertained The mid-day sun; and up and down the roof White pigeons nestled.
There was no sound but one.
Three cart horses were looking over a gate Drowsily through their forelocks, swishing their tails Against a fly, a solitary fly.
The winter's cheek flushed as if he had drained Spring, summer, and autumn at a draught And smiled quietly.
But 'twas not winter-- Rather a season of bliss unchangeable, Awakened from farm and church where it had lain Safe under tile and latch for ages since This England, Old already, was called Merry.

by Edward Thomas
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