by Emily Brontë (1818 - 1848)

The starry night shall tidings bring
Language: English 
The starry night shall tidings bring ; 
Go out upon the breezy moor, 
Watch for a bird with sable wing, 
And beak and talons dropping gore. 
Look not around, look not beneath, 
But mutely trace its airy way, 
Mark where it lights upon the heath ; 
Then, wanderer, kneel thee down, and pray. 
What fortune may await thee there, 
I will not, and I dare not tell ; 
But Heaven is moved by fervent prayer, 
And God is mercy fare thee well!

It is not pride, it is not shame, 
That makes her leave the gorgeous hall ; 
And though neglect her heart might tame, 
She mourns not for her sudden fall. 
'Tis true she stands among the crowd, 
An unmarked and an unloved child. 
While each young comrade, blithe and proud, 
Glides through the maze of pleasure wild. 
And all do homage to their will, 
And all seem glad their voice to hear ; 
She heeds not that, but hardly still 
Her eye can hold the quivering tear. 
What made her weep, what made her glide 
Out to the park this dreary day,
And cast her jewelled chains aside. 

And seek a rough and lonely way ; 
And down beneath a cedar's shade, 
On the wet grass regardless lie, 
With nothing but its gloomy head 
Between her and the showering sky ? 
I saw her stand in the gallery long, 
Watching those little children there, 
As they were playing the pillars 'mong, 
And bounding down the marble stair. 

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Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2007-12-06
Line count: 36
Word count: 249