On Wenlock Edge the wood's in trouble; His forest fleece the Wrekin heaves; The gale, it plies the saplings double, And thick on Severn snow the leaves. 'Twould blow like this through holt and hanger When Uricon the city stood: 'Tis the old wind in the old anger, But then it threshed another wood. Then, 'twas before my time, the Roman At yonder heaving hill would stare: The blood that warms an English yeoman, The thoughts that hurt him, they were there. There, like the wind through woods in riot, Through him the gale of life blew high; The tree of man was never quiet: Then 'twas the Roman, now 'tis I. The gale, it plies the saplings double, It blows so hard, 'twill soon be gone: To-day the Roman and his trouble Are ashes under Uricon.
About the headline (FAQ)
- by Alfred Edward Housman (1859 - 1936), no title, appears in A Shropshire Lad, no. 31, first published 1896 [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Ivor (Bertie) Gurney (1890 - 1937), "On Wenlock Edge", 1917. [voice and piano] [text not verified]
- by John Raynor (1909 - 1970), "On Wenlock Edge" [baritone and piano] [text not verified]
- by Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872 - 1958), "On Wenlock Edge", 1908-9, published 1911, rev. 1946 [tenor, piano, and string quartet ad libitum], from On Wenlock Edge, no. 1. [text verified 1 time]
- by John Ramsden Williamson (1929 - 2015), "On Wenlock Edge the wood's in trouble" [baritone and piano] [text not verified]
Researcher for this text: Ted Perry
This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 20
Word count: 137