by James Stephens (1882 - 1950)

The Tale of Mad Brigid
Language: English 
And then 
There rung a bell
out of the evening air: 
One big star fell 
In a long golden flare
through a great stillness, 
And he was standing there. 

There came a dullness
creeping through me slow, 
Nor could I know that it was truly he 
Who stood beside, when, lo, 
He smiled, and I was made to know, 
Nor hesitate 
because of his grave kingliness and state, 
And steady eyes and brows immaculate. 

But then the weight 
Of his too sudden glory bowed me down 
Slow to the ground. 
I feared that he might frown without a sound, 
Or speak in fire. 

Then he said "sweet," and I was dumb ; 
I dared not come 
because of my desire ; 
And he went slow away. 
And from the grey, 
cold evening came the tweet, 
Sad to my heart, but infinitely sweet, 
Of some late flying wren. 


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: 2009-01-26
Line count: 28
Word count: 147