When I was one and twenty

Song Cycle by Robin Field (b. 1935)

Word count: 412

?. Far in a western brookland [sung text not yet checked]

Far in a western brookland
  That bred me long ago
The poplars stand and tremble
  By pools I used to know.

There, in the windless night-time,
  The wanderer, marvelling why,
Halts on the bridge to hearken
  How soft the poplars sigh.

He hears: no more remembered
  In fields where I was known,
Here I lie down in London
  And turn to rest alone.

There, by the starlit fences,
  The wanderer halts and hears
My soul that lingers sighing
  About the glimmering weirs.

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Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

?. Say, lad, have you things to do? [sung text not yet checked]

Say, lad, have you things to do?
  Quick then, while your day's at prime.
Quick, and if 'tis work for two,
  Here am I, man: now's your time.

Send me now, and I shall go;
  Call me, I shall hear you call;
Use me ere they lay me low
  Where a man's no use at all;

Ere the wholesome flesh decay,
  And the willing nerve be numb,
And the lips lack breath to say,
  "No, my lad, I cannot come."

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Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

?. The nettle [sung text not yet checked]

It nods and curtseys and recovers
When the wind blows above,
The nettle on the graves of lovers
That hanged themselves for love.

The nettle nods, the wind blows over,
The man, he does not move,
The lover of the grave, the lover
That hanged himself for love.

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Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

?. When I was one-and-twenty [sung text not yet checked]

When I was one-and-twenty
 I heard [a wise man]1 say,
"Give crowns and pounds and guineas
 But not your heart away;
Give pearls away and rubies
 But keep your fancy free."
But I was one-and-twenty,
 No use to talk to me.

When I was one-and-twenty
 I heard him say again,
"The heart out of the bosom
 Was never given in vain;
'Tis paid with sighs a plenty
 And sold for endless rue."
And I am two-and-twenty,
 And oh, 'tis true, 'tis true.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Patricia Dillard Eguchi) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (Bertram Kottmann) , "Als ich war einundzwanzig", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • HEB Hebrew (עברית) (Max Mader) , "כאשר הייתי בן עשרים ואחת", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Steele: "an old man"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. The land of lost content [sung text not yet checked]

Into my heart an air that kills
From yon far country blows:
What are those blue remembered hills,
What spires, what farms are those?

That is the land of lost content,
I see it shining plain,
The happy highways where I went
And cannot come again.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Dentro il mio cuore un vento che uccide", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

?. Loveliest of trees [sung text not yet checked]

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy [springs]1 a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the [woodlands]2 I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

Authorship

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Patricia Dillard Eguchi) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • HEB Hebrew (עברית) (Max Mader) , "היפה בעצים", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Manton: "years"
2 Steele: "woodland"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]