I am quite ignorant about the works of A.E. Houseman, and apart from the fact he is a Shropshire poet, I know very little about his life either. This is something I must remedy! While we were on holiday once, not far from where Houseman was born, my husband bought ‘A Shropshire Lad’, published by Houseman in 1896,when he was thirty-seven; I must dig it out and read it!
Here is Houseman’s ‘March’:
The sun at noon to higher air,
Unharnessing the silver Pair
That late before his chariot swam,
Rides on the gold wool of the Ram.
So braver notes the storm-cock sings
To start the rusted wheel of things,
And brutes in field and brutes in pen
Leap that the world goes round again.
The boys are up the woods with day
To fetch the daffodils away,
And home at noonday from the hills
They bring no dearth of daffodils.
Afield for palms the girls repair,
And sure enough the palms are there,
And each will find by hedge or pond
Her waving silver-tufted wand.
In farm and field through all the shire
The eye beholds the heart’s desire;
Ah, let not only mine be vain,
For lovers should be loved again.