There was a weasel lived in the sun With all his family, Till a keeper shot him with his gun And hung him up on a tree, Where he swings in the wind and rain, In the sun and in the snow, Without pleasure, without pain, On the dead oak tree bough. There was a crow who was no sleeper, But a thief and a murderer Till a very late hour; and this keeper Made him one of the things that were, To hang and flap in rain and wind, In the sun and in the snow. There are no more sins to be sinned On the dead oak tree bough. There was a magpie, too, Had a long tongue and a long tail; He could both talk and do -- But what did that avail? He, too, flaps in the wind and rain Alongside weasel and crow, Without pleasure, without pain, On the dead oak tree bough. And many other beasts And birds, skin, bone and feather, Have been taken from their feasts And hung up there together, To swing and have endless leisure In the sun and in the snow, Without pain, without pleasure, On the dead oak tree bough.
- by Edward Thomas (1878 - 1917), as Edward Eastaway, "The gallows", first published 1917 [author's text not yet checked 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 Gary Bachlund (b. 1947), "The gallows", 2010 [tenor and piano], from Ten Poems of Edward Thomas, no. 6 [ sung text checked 1 time]
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
This text was added to the website: 2011-12-28
Line count: 32
Word count: 201