Vagabond Songs

Song Cycle by Ernest Bristow Farrar (1885 - 1918)

Word count: 389

1. Wanderer's song [sung text checked 1 time]

I have had enough of women, and enough of love,
But the land waits, and the sea waits, and day and night is enough;
Give me a long white road, nd the grey wide path of the sea,
And the wind's will and the bird's will, and the heart-ache still in me.

Why should I seek out sorrow, and give gold for strife?
I have loved much and wept much, but tears and love are not life:
The grass calls to my heart, and the foam to my blood cries up,
And the sun shines and the road shines, and the wine's in the cup.

I have had enough of wisdom, and enough of mirth,
For the way's one and the end's one, and it's soon to the ends of the earth;
And it's then goodnight and to bed, and if heels or heart ache,
Well, it's sound sleep and long sleep, and sleep too deep to wake.

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. Silent noon [sung text not yet checked]

Your hands lie open in the long fresh grass, -
The finger-points look through like rosy blooms:
Your eyes smile peace. The pasture gleams and glooms
'Neath billowing [clouds]1 that scatter and amass.

All round our nest, far as the eye can pass,
Are golden kingcup fields with silver edge
Where the cow-parsley skirts the hawthorn hedge.
'Tis visible silence, still as the hour glass.

Deep in the sunsearched growths the dragon-fly
Hangs like a blue thread loosened from the sky: -
So this winged hour is dropt to us from above.
Oh! clasp we to our hearts, for deathless dower,
This close-companioned inarticulate hour
When twofold silence was the song of love.

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

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Vaughan Williams: "skies"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. The roadside fire [sung text checked 1 time]

I will make you brooches and toys for your delight
Of bird-song at morning and star-shine at night,
I will make a palace fit for you and me
Of green days in forests, and blue days at sea.

I will make my kitchen, and you shall keep your room,
Where white flows the river and bright blows the broom;
And you shall wash your linen and keep your body white
In rainfall at morning and dewfall at night.

And this shall be for music when no one else is near,
The fine song for singing, the rare song to hear!
That only I remember, that only you admire,
Of the broad road that stretches and the roadside fire.

Authorship

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

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (David Paley) , "Romanze", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Lucio Forte) , "Farò spille e balocchi per tua delizia", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Note: first published in Pall Mall Gazette, January 1895

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]