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Best Famous Helen Poems

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Written by Charlotte Bronte | Create an image from this poem

The Missionary

 Lough, vessel, plough the British main,
Seek the free ocean's wider plain; 
Leave English scenes and English skies,
Unbind, dissever English ties; 
Bear me to climes remote and strange, 
Where altered life, fast-following change,
Hot action, never-ceasing toil, 
Shall stir, turn, dig, the spirit's soil; 
Fresh roots shall plant, fresh seed shall sow, 
Till a new garden there shall grow, 
Cleared of the weeds that fill it now,­ 
Mere human love, mere selfish yearning, 
Which, cherished, would arrest me yet.
I grasp the plough, there's no returning, Let me, then, struggle to forget.
But England's shores are yet in view, And England's skies of tender blue Are arched above her guardian sea.
I cannot yet Remembrance flee; I must again, then, firmly face That task of anguish, to retrace.
Wedded to home­I home forsake, Fearful of change­I changes make; Too fond of ease­I plunge in toil; Lover of calm­I seek turmoil: Nature and hostile Destiny Stir in my heart a conflict wild; And long and fierce the war will be Ere duty both has reconciled.
What other tie yet holds me fast To the divorced, abandoned past? Smouldering, on my heart's altar lies The fire of some great sacrifice, Not yet half quenched.
The sacred steel But lately struck my carnal will, My life-long hope, first joy and last, What I loved well, and clung to fast; What I wished wildly to retain, What I renounced with soul-felt pain; What­when I saw it, axe-struck, perish­ Left me no joy on earth to cherish; A man bereft­yet sternly now I do confirm that Jephtha vow: Shall I retract, or fear, or flee ? Did Christ, when rose the fatal tree Before him, on Mount Calvary ? 'Twas a long fight, hard fought, but won, And what I did was justly done.
Yet, Helen ! from thy love I turned, When my heart most for thy heart burned; I dared thy tears, I dared thy scorn­ Easier the death-pang had been borne.
Helen ! thou mightst not go with me, I could not­dared not stay for thee ! I heard, afar, in bonds complain The savage from beyond the main; And that wild sound rose o'er the cry Wrung out by passion's agony; And even when, with the bitterest tear I ever shed, mine eyes were dim, Still, with the spirit's vision clear, I saw Hell's empire, vast and grim, Spread on each Indian river's shore, Each realm of Asia covering o'er.
There the weak, trampled by the strong, Live but to suffer­hopeless die; There pagan-priests, whose creed is Wrong, Extortion, Lust, and Cruelty, Crush our lost race­and brimming fill The bitter cup of human ill; And I­who have the healing creed, The faith benign of Mary's Son; Shall I behold my brother's need And selfishly to aid him shun ? I­who upon my mother's knees, In childhood, read Christ's written word, Received his legacy of peace, His holy rule of action heard; I­in whose heart the sacred sense Of Jesus' love was early felt; Of his pure full benevolence, His pitying tenderness for guilt; His shepherd-care for wandering sheep, For all weak, sorrowing, trembling things, His mercy vast, his passion deep Of anguish for man's sufferings; I­schooled from childhood in such lore­ Dared I draw back or hesitate, When called to heal the sickness sore Of those far off and desolate ? Dark, in the realm and shades of Death, Nations and tribes and empires lie, But even to them the light of Faith Is breaking on their sombre sky: And be it mine to bid them raise Their drooped heads to the kindling scene, And know and hail the sunrise blaze Which heralds Christ the Nazarene.
I know how Hell the veil will spread Over their brows and filmy eyes, And earthward crush the lifted head That would look up and seek the skies; I know what war the fiend will wage Against that soldier of the cross, Who comes to dare his demon-rage, And work his kingdom shame and loss.
Yes, hard and terrible the toil Of him who steps on foreign soil, Resolved to plant the gospel vine, Where tyrants rule and slaves repine; Eager to lift Religion's light Where thickest shades of mental night Screen the false god and fiendish rite; Reckless that missionary blood, Shed in wild wilderness and wood, Has left, upon the unblest air, The man's deep moan­the martyr's prayer.
I know my lot­I only ask Power to fulfil the glorious task; Willing the spirit, may the flesh Strength for the day receive afresh.
May burning sun or deadly wind Prevail not o'er an earnest mind; May torments strange or direst death Nor trample truth, nor baffle faith.
Though such blood-drops should fall from me As fell in old Gethsemane, Welcome the anguish, so it gave More strength to work­more skill to save.
And, oh ! if brief must be my time, If hostile hand or fatal clime Cut short my course­still o'er my grave, Lord, may thy harvest whitening wave.
So I the culture may begin, Let others thrust the sickle in; If but the seed will faster grow, May my blood water what I sow ! What ! have I ever trembling stood, And feared to give to God that blood ? What ! has the coward love of life Made me shrink from the righteous strife ? Have human passions, human fears Severed me from those Pioneers, Whose task is to march first, and trace Paths for the progress of our race ? It has been so; but grant me, Lord, Now to stand steadfast by thy word ! Protected by salvation's helm, Shielded by faith­with truth begirt, To smile when trials seek to whelm And stand 'mid testing fires unhurt ! Hurling hell's strongest bulwarks down, Even when the last pang thrills my breast, When Death bestows the Martyr's crown, And calls me into Jesus' rest.
Then for my ultimate reward­ Then for the world-rejoicing word­ The voice from Father­Spirit­Son: " Servant of God, well hast thou done !"


Written by John Ashbery | Create an image from this poem

Daffy Duck In Hollywood

 Something strange is creeping across me.
La Celestina has only to warble the first few bars Of "I Thought about You" or something mellow from Amadigi di Gaula for everything--a mint-condition can Of Rumford's Baking Powder, a celluloid earring, Speedy Gonzales, the latest from Helen Topping Miller's fertile Escritoire, a sheaf of suggestive pix on greige, deckle-edged Stock--to come clattering through the rainbow trellis Where Pistachio Avenue rams the 2300 block of Highland Fling Terrace.
He promised he'd get me out of this one, That mean old cartoonist, but just look what he's Done to me now! I scarce dare approach me mug's attenuated Reflection in yon hubcap, so jaundiced, so déconfit Are its lineaments--fun, no doubt, for some quack phrenologist's Fern-clogged waiting room, but hardly what you'd call Companionable.
But everything is getting choked to the point of Silence.
Just now a magnetic storm hung in the swatch of sky Over the Fudds' garage, reducing it--drastically-- To the aura of a plumbago-blue log cabin on A Gadsden Purchase commemorative cover.
Suddenly all is Loathing.
I don't want to go back inside any more.
You meet Enough vague people on this emerald traffic-island--no, Not people, comings and goings, more: mutterings, splatterings, The bizarrely but effectively equipped infantries of happy-go-nutty Vegetal jacqueries, plumed, pointed at the little White cardboard castle over the mill run.
"Up The lazy river, how happy we could be?" How will it end? That geranium glow Over Anaheim's had the riot act read to it by the Etna-size firecracker that exploded last minute into A carte du Tendre in whose lower right-hand corner (Hard by the jock-itch sand-trap that skirts The asparagus patch of algolagnic nuits blanches) Amadis Is cozening the Princesse de Cleves into a midnight micturition spree On the Tamigi with the Wallets (Walt, Blossom, and little Sleezix) on a lamé barge "borrowed" from Ollie Of the Movies' dread mistress of the robes.
Wait! I have an announcement! This wide, tepidly meandering, Civilized Lethe (one can barely make out the maypoles And châlets de nécessitê on its sedgy shore) leads to Tophet, that Landfill-haunted, not-so-residential resort from which Some travellers return! This whole moment is the groin Of a borborygmic giant who even now Is rolling over on us in his sleep.
Farewell bocages, Tanneries, water-meadows.
The allegory comes unsnarled Too soon; a shower of pecky acajou harpoons is About all there is to be noted between tornadoes.
I have Only my intermittent life in your thoughts to live Which is like thinking in another language.
Everything Depends on whether somebody reminds you of me.
That this is a fabulation, and that those "other times" Are in fact the silences of the soul, picked out in Diamonds on stygian velvet, matters less than it should.
Prodigies of timing may be arranged to convince them We live in one dimension, they in ours.
While I Abroad through all the coasts of dark destruction seek Deliverance for us all, think in that language: its Grammar, though tortured, offers pavillions At each new parting of the ways.
Pastel Ambulances scoop up the quick and hie them to hospitals.
"It's all bits and pieces, spangles, patches, really; nothing Stands alone.
What happened to creative evolution?" Sighed Aglavaine.
Then to her Sélysette: "If his Achievement is only to end up less boring than the others, What's keeping us here? Why not leave at once? I have to stay here while they sit in there, Laugh, drink, have fine time.
In my day One lay under the tough green leaves, Pretending not to notice how they bled into The sky's aqua, the wafted-away no-color of regions supposed Not to concern us.
And so we too Came where the others came: nights of physical endurance, Or if, by day, our behavior was anarchically Correct, at least by New Brutalism standards, all then Grew taciturn by previous agreement.
We were spirited Away en bateau, under cover of fudge dark.
It's not the incomplete importunes, but the spookiness Of the finished product.
True, to ask less were folly, yet If he is the result of himself, how much the better For him we ought to be! And how little, finally, We take this into account! Is the puckered garance satin Of a case that once held a brace of dueling pistols our Only acknowledging of that color? I like not this, Methinks, yet this disappointing sequel to ourselves Has been applauded in London and St.
Petersburg.
Somewhere Ravens pray for us.
" The storm finished brewing.
And thus She questioned all who came in at the great gate, but none She found who ever heard of Amadis, Nor of stern Aureng-Zebe, his first love.
Some They were to whom this mattered not a jot: since all By definition is completeness (so In utter darkness they reasoned), why not Accept it as it pleases to reveal itself? As when Low skyscrapers from lower-hanging clouds reveal A turret there, an art-deco escarpment here, and last perhaps The pattern that may carry the sense, but Stays hidden in the mysteries of pagination.
Not what we see but how we see it matters; all's Alike, the same, and we greet him who announces The change as we would greet the change itself.
All life is but a figment; conversely, the tiny Tome that slips from your hand is not perhaps the Missing link in this invisible picnic whose leverage Shrouds our sense of it.
Therefore bivouac we On this great, blond highway, unimpeded by Veiled scruples, worn conundrums.
Morning is Impermanent.
Grab sex things, swing up Over the horizon like a boy On a fishing expedition.
No one really knows Or cares whether this is the whole of which parts Were vouchsafed--once--but to be ambling on's The tradition more than the safekeeping of it.
This mulch for Play keeps them interested and busy while the big, Vaguer stuff can decide what it wants--what maps, what Model cities, how much waste space.
Life, our Life anyway, is between.
We don't mind Or notice any more that the sky is green, a parrot One, but have our earnest where it chances on us, Disingenuous, intrigued, inviting more, Always invoking the echo, a summer's day.
Written by Edgar Allan Poe | Create an image from this poem

To Helen

Helen thy beauty is to me
Like those Nicean barks of yore 
That gently o'er a perfumed sea 
The weary wayworn wanderer bore
To his own native shore.
On desperate seas long wont to roam Thy hyacinth hair thy classic face Thy Naiad airs have brought me home To the glory that was Greece And the grandeur that was Rome.
Lo! in yon brilliant window-niche How statue-like I see thee stand The agate lamp within thy hand! Ah Psyche from the regions which Are Holy Land!
Written by William Butler Yeats | Create an image from this poem

A Prayer For My Daughter

 Once more the storm is howling, and half hid
Under this cradle-hood and coverlid
My child sleeps on.
There is no obstacle But Gregory's wood and one bare hill Whereby the haystack- and roof-levelling wind.
Bred on the Atlantic, can be stayed; And for an hour I have walked and prayed Because of the great gloom that is in my mind.
I have walked and prayed for this young child an hour And heard the sea-wind scream upon the tower, And-under the arches of the bridge, and scream In the elms above the flooded stream; Imagining in excited reverie That the future years had come, Dancing to a frenzied drum, Out of the murderous innocence of the sea.
May she be granted beauty and yet not Beauty to make a stranger's eye distraught, Or hers before a looking-glass, for such, Being made beautiful overmuch, Consider beauty a sufficient end, Lose natural kindness and maybe The heart-revealing intimacy That chooses right, and never find a friend.
Helen being chosen found life flat and dull And later had much trouble from a fool, While that great Queen, that rose out of the spray, Being fatherless could have her way Yet chose a bandy-leggèd smith for man.
It's certain that fine women eat A crazy salad with their meat Whereby the Horn of plenty is undone.
In courtesy I'd have her chiefly learned; Hearts are not had as a gift but hearts are earned By those that are not entirely beautiful; Yet many, that have played the fool For beauty's very self, has charm made wisc.
And many a poor man that has roved, Loved and thought himself beloved, From a glad kindness cannot take his eyes.
May she become a flourishing hidden tree That all her thoughts may like the linnet be, And have no business but dispensing round Their magnanimities of sound, Nor but in merriment begin a chase, Nor but in merriment a quarrel.
O may she live like some green laurel Rooted in one dear perpetual place.
My mind, because the minds that I have loved, The sort of beauty that I have approved, Prosper but little, has dried up of late, Yet knows that to be choked with hate May well be of all evil chances chief.
If there's no hatred in a mind Assault and battery of the wind Can never tear the linnet from the leaf.
An intellectual hatred is the worst, So let her think opinions are accursed.
Have I not seen the loveliest woman born Out of the mouth of plenty's horn, Because of her opinionated mind Barter that horn and every good By quiet natures understood For an old bellows full of angry wind? Considering that, all hatred driven hence, The soul recovers radical innocence And learns at last that it is self-delighting, Self-appeasing, self-affrighting, And that its own sweet will is Heaven's will; She can, though every face should scowl And every windy quarter howl Or every bellows burst, be happy Still.
And may her bridegroom bring her to a house Where all's accustomed, ceremonious; For arrogance and hatred are the wares Peddled in the thoroughfares.
How but in custom and in ceremony Are innocence and beauty born? Ceremony's a name for the rich horn, And custom for the spreading laurel tree.
Written by Carolyn Kizer | Create an image from this poem

Fearful Women

 Arms and the girl I sing - O rare
arms that are braceleted and white and bare

arms that were lovely Helen's, in whose name
Greek slaughtered Trojan.
Helen was to blame.
Scape-nanny call her; wars for turf and profit don't sound glamorous enough.
Mythologize your women! None escape.
Europe was named from an act of bestial rape: Eponymous girl on bull-back, he intent on scattering sperm across a continent.
Old Zeus refused to take the rap.
It's not his name in big print on the map.
But let's go back to the beginning when sinners didn't know that they were sinning.
He, one rib short: she lived to rue it when Adam said to God, "She made me do it.
" Eve learned that learning was a dangerous thing for her: no end of trouble would it bring.
An educated woman is a danger.
Lock up your mate! Keep a submissive stranger like Darby's Joan, content with church and Kinder, not like that sainted Joan, burnt to a cinder.
Whether we wield a scepter or a mop It's clear you fear that we may get on top.
And if we do -I say it without animus- It's not from you we learned to be magnaminous.


Written by Helen Dunmore | Create an image from this poem

All The Things You Are Not Yet

 for tess

Tonight there's a crowd in my head:
all the things you are not yet.
You are words without paper, pages sighing in summer forests, gardens where builders stub out their rubble and plastic oozes its sweat.
All the things you are, you are not yet.
Not yet the lonely window in midwinter with the whine of tea on an empty stomach, not yet the heating you can't afford and must wait for, tamping a coin in on each hour.
Not the gorgeous shush of restaurant doors and their interiors, always so much smaller.
Not the smell of the newsprint, the blur on your fingertips — your fame.
Not yet the love you will have for Winter Pearmains and Chanel No 5 — and then your being unable to buy both washing-machine and computer when your baby's due to be born, and my voice saying, "I'll get you one" and you frowning, frowning at walls and surfaces which are not mine — all this, not yet.
Give me your hand, that small one without a mark of work on it, the one that's strange to the washing-up bowl and doesn't know Fairy Liquid for whiskey.
Not yet the moment of your arrival in taxis at daring destinations, or your being alone at stations with the skirts of your fashionable clothes flapping and no money for the telephone.
Not yet the moment when I can give you nothing so well-folded it fits in an envelope — a dull letter you won't reread.
Not yet the moment of your assimilation in that river flowing westward: rivers of clothes, of dreams, an accent unlike my own saying to someone I don't know: darling.
.
.
Written by William Butler Yeats | Create an image from this poem

The Tower

 I

What shall I do with this absurdity -
O heart, O troubled heart - this caricature,
Decrepit age that has been tied to me
As to a dog's tail?
 Never had I more
Excited, passionate, fantastical
Imagination, nor an ear and eye
That more expected the impossible -
No, not in boyhood when with rod and fly,
Or the humbler worm, I climbed Ben Bulben's back
And had the livelong summer day to spend.
It seems that I must bid the Muse go pack, Choose Plato and Plotinus for a friend Until imagination, ear and eye, Can be content with argument and deal In abstract things; or be derided by A sort of battered kettle at the heel.
II I pace upon the battlements and stare On the foundations of a house, or where Tree, like a sooty finger, starts from the earth; And send imagination forth Under the day's declining beam, and call Images and memories From ruin or from ancient trees, For I would ask a question of them all.
Beyond that ridge lived Mrs.
French, and once When every silver candlestick or sconce Lit up the dark mahogany and the wine.
A serving-man, that could divine That most respected lady's every wish, Ran and with the garden shears Clipped an insolent farmer's ears And brought them in a little covered dish.
Some few remembered still when I was young A peasant girl commended by a Song, Who'd lived somewhere upon that rocky place, And praised the colour of her face, And had the greater joy in praising her, Remembering that, if walked she there, Farmers jostled at the fair So great a glory did the song confer.
And certain men, being maddened by those rhymes, Or else by toasting her a score of times, Rose from the table and declared it right To test their fancy by their sight; But they mistook the brightness of the moon For the prosaic light of day - Music had driven their wits astray - And one was drowned in the great bog of Cloone.
Strange, but the man who made the song was blind; Yet, now I have considered it, I find That nothing strange; the tragedy began With Homer that was a blind man, And Helen has all living hearts betrayed.
O may the moon and sunlight seem One inextricable beam, For if I triumph I must make men mad.
And I myself created Hanrahan And drove him drunk or sober through the dawn From somewhere in the neighbouring cottages.
Caught by an old man's juggleries He stumbled, tumbled, fumbled to and fro And had but broken knees for hire And horrible splendour of desire; I thought it all out twenty years ago: Good fellows shuffled cards in an old bawn; And when that ancient ruffian's turn was on He so bewitched the cards under his thumb That all but the one card became A pack of hounds and not a pack of cards, And that he changed into a hare.
Hanrahan rose in frenzy there And followed up those baying creatures towards - O towards I have forgotten what - enough! I must recall a man that neither love Nor music nor an enemy's clipped ear Could, he was so harried, cheer; A figure that has grown so fabulous There's not a neighbour left to say When he finished his dog's day: An ancient bankrupt master of this house.
Before that ruin came, for centuries, Rough men-at-arms, cross-gartered to the knees Or shod in iron, climbed the narrow stairs, And certain men-at-arms there were Whose images, in the Great Memory stored, Come with loud cry and panting breast To break upon a sleeper's rest While their great wooden dice beat on the board.
As I would question all, come all who can; Come old, necessitous.
half-mounted man; And bring beauty's blind rambling celebrant; The red man the juggler sent Through God-forsaken meadows; Mrs.
French, Gifted with so fine an ear; The man drowned in a bog's mire, When mocking Muses chose the country wench.
Did all old men and women, rich and poor, Who trod upon these rocks or passed this door, Whether in public or in secret rage As I do now against old age? But I have found an answer in those eyes That are impatient to be gone; Go therefore; but leave Hanrahan, For I need all his mighty memories.
Old lecher with a love on every wind, Bring up out of that deep considering mind All that you have discovered in the grave, For it is certain that you have Reckoned up every unforeknown, unseeing plunge, lured by a softening eye, Or by a touch or a sigh, Into the labyrinth of another's being; Does the imagination dwell the most Upon a woman won or woman lost? If on the lost, admit you turned aside From a great labyrinth out of pride, Cowardice, some silly over-subtle thought Or anything called conscience once; And that if memory recur, the sun's Under eclipse and the day blotted out.
III It is time that I wrote my will; I choose upstanding men That climb the streams until The fountain leap, and at dawn Drop their cast at the side Of dripping stone; I declare They shall inherit my pride, The pride of people that were Bound neither to Cause nor to State.
Neither to slaves that were spat on, Nor to the tyrants that spat, The people of Burke and of Grattan That gave, though free to refuse - pride, like that of the morn, When the headlong light is loose, Or that of the fabulous horn, Or that of the sudden shower When all streams are dry, Or that of the hour When the swan must fix his eye Upon a fading gleam, Float out upon a long Last reach of glittering stream And there sing his last song.
And I declare my faith: I mock plotinus' thought And cry in plato's teeth, Death and life were not Till man made up the whole, Made lock, stock and barrel Out of his bitter soul, Aye, sun and moon and star, all, And further add to that That, being dead, we rise, Dream and so create Translunar paradise.
I have prepared my peace With learned Italian things And the proud stones of Greece, Poet's imaginings And memories of love, Memories of the words of women, All those things whereof Man makes a superhuman, Mirror-resembling dream.
As at the loophole there The daws chatter and scream, And drop twigs layer upon layer.
When they have mounted up, The mother bird will rest On their hollow top, And so warm her wild nest.
I leave both faith and pride To young upstanding men Climbing the mountain-side, That under bursting dawn They may drop a fly; Being of that metal made Till it was broken by This sedentary trade.
Now shall I make my soul, Compelling it to study In a learned school Till the wreck of body, Slow decay of blood, Testy delirium Or dull decrepitude, Or what worse evil come - The death of friends, or death Of every brilliant eye That made a catch in the breath - Seem but the clouds of the sky When the horizon fades; Or a bird's sleepy cry Among the deepening shades.
Written by Helen Hunt Jackson | Create an image from this poem

New Years Morning

 Only a night from old to new! 
Only a night, and so much wrought! 
The Old Year's heart all weary grew, 
But said: The New Year rest has brought.
" The Old Year's hopes its heart laid down, As in a grave; but trusting, said: "The blossoms of the New Year's crown Bloom from the ashes of the dead.
" The Old Year's heart was full of greed; With selfishness it longed and ached, And cried: "I have not half I need.
My thirst is bitter and unslaked.
But to the New Year's generous hand All gifts in plenty shall return; True love it shall understand; By all y failures it shall learn.
I have been reckless; it shall be Quiet and calm and pure of life.
I was a slave; it shall go free, And find sweet pace where I leave strife.
" Only a night from old to new! Never a night such changes brought.
The Old Year had its work to do; No New Year miracles are wrought.
Always a night from old to new! Night and the healing balm of sleep! Each morn is New Year's morn come true, Morn of a festival to keep.
All nights are sacred nights to make Confession and resolve and prayer; All days are sacred days to wake New gladness in the sunny air.
Only a night from old to new; Only a sleep from night to morn.
The new is but the old coem true; Each sunrise sees a new year born.
Written by Helen Hunt Jackson | Create an image from this poem

Octobers Bright Blue Weather

 O suns and skies and clouds of June, 
And flowers of June together, 
Ye cannot rival for one hour 
October's bright blue weather;

When loud the bumblebee makes haste, 
Belated, thriftless vagrant, 
And goldenrod is dying fast, 
And lanes with grapes are fragrant;

When gentians roll their fingers tight 
To save them for the morning, 
And chestnuts fall from satin burrs 
Without a sound of warning;

When on the ground red apples lie 
In piles like jewels shining, 
And redder still on old stone walls 
Are leaves of woodbine twining;

When all the lovely wayside things 
Their white-winged seeds are sowing, 
And in the fields still green and fair, 
Late aftermaths are growing;

When springs run low, and on the brooks, 
In idle golden freighting, 
Bright leaves sink noiseless in the hush 
Of woods, for winter waiting;

When comrades seek sweet country haunts, 
By twos and twos together, 
And count like misers, hour by hour, 
October's bright blue weather.
O sun and skies and flowers of June, Count all your boasts together, Love loveth best of all the year October's bright blue weather.
Written by Helen Hunt Jackson | Create an image from this poem

My Bees: An Allegory

 "O bees, sweet bees!" I said, "that nearest field 
Is shining white with fragrant immortelles.
Fly swiftly there and drain those honey wells.
" Then, spicy pines the sunny hive to shield, I set, and patient for the autumn's yield Of sweet I waited.
When the village bells Rang frosty clear, and from their satin cells The chestnuts leaped, rejoicing, I unsealed My hive.
Alas! no snowy honey there Was stored.
My wicked bees had borne away Their queen and left no trace.
That very day, An idle drone who sauntered through the air I tracked and followed, and he led me where My truant bees and stolen honey lay.
Twice faithless bees! They had sought out to eat Rank, bitter herbs.
The honey was not sweet.
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