by John Clare (1793 - 1864)

Song's Eternity
Language: English 
What is song's eternity?
  Come and see.
Can it noise and bustle be?
  Come and see.
Praises sung or praises said
  Can it be?
Wait awhile and these are dead --
  Sigh, sigh;
Be they high or lowly bred  They die.

What is song's eternity?
  Come and see.
Melodies of earth and sky,
  Here they be.
Song once sung to Adam's ears
  Can it be?
Ballads of six thousand years
  Thrive, thrive;
Songs awaken with the spheres

Mighty songs that miss decay,
  What are they?
Crowds and cities pass away
  Like a day.
Books are out and books are read;
  What are they?
Years will lay them with the dead --
  Sigh, sigh;
Trifles unto nothing wed,
  They die.

Dreamers, mark the honey bee;
  Mark the tree
Where the blue cap "_tootle tee_"
  Sings a glee
Sung to Adam and to Eve
  Here they be.
When floods covered every bough,
  Noah's ark
Heard that ballad singing now;
  Hark, hark,

"_Tootle tootle tootle tee_" --
  Can it be
Pride and fame must shadows be?
  Come and see --
Every season own her own;
  Bird and bee
Sing creation's music on;
  Nature's glee
Is in every mood and tone


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: 2005-12-19
Line count: 49
Word count: 195