Therefore all seasons shall be sweet to thee,
Whether summer clothe the general earth
With greeness, or the redbreast sit and sing
Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch
Of mossy apple-tree, while the nigh thatch
Smokes in the sun-thaw; whether the eave-drops fall
Heard only in the trances of the blast,
Or if the secret ministry of frost
Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

St George's Day

We English aren't very good at displaying patriotism these days but as April 23rd is St George's Day and St George is the patron saint of England I thought I would fly the flag and post this rather lovely poem written by Rupert Brooke in World War 1.

The Soldier

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.

An English country lane.

Alas, there are all too many corners of foreign fields that are forever England.

Happy St George's Day to all of you.


rel said...

Happy St. Georges day back to you. I can't say that I've heard of this day before, so thanks for bring a bit of learning to my door. The poem is magnificent. It tells of a person's being rooted no matter where they may be, and that a part of that stays with them always.
I completed all the household tasks, ie, cleaning, dusting, vacumning, and clothes washing in good order before D. arrived home at midnight on Saturday. She was fullfilled but exhausted.

Ragged Roses said...

That poem never loses its resonance! Hope you have a happy day.
Kim x

Anonymous said...

I think St. Georges day got lost somewhere, and tends now to be celebrated only by the far-right. Why? I have no idea, I think taking the time out to appreciate where we live is a lovely thing - although I don't think it's always interpreted like that.

I love England so much, the pastoral scenes, the towns, the hustle and bustle - but most of all the quiet, serene bits of England. We are very lucky to live in such a beautiful place :) I think Mr Brooke had it right, you know.

PAT said...

I've always loved beautiful England, even though I've never been!
Lovely poem and post, Rowan!

Back Porch Musings

JacquiG said...

Happy St George's Day, Rowan! Is there anything special that you and your family do on this day?

peppylady (Dora) said...

When I was in 4-H.

The group was called Saint Georges.

meggie said...

Happy St Geroge's Day.
I realise I am a day late now.

Kelli said...

I hope you had a wonderful St. George's Day, Rowan!

La Tea Dah said...

Hi Rowan,

Thank you for visiting Gracious Hospitality --- and directing me to your lovely blog. I'm so glad to meet you! I enjoyed your post about St. George's day (it takes me back to my English roots; my grandfather was born in England and then immigrated to Canada). Your granddaughter is adorable! I will be back to read more of your lovely blog.


Anonymous said...

Happy belated St. George's to you!

In the spring a young man's fancy may turn to love, but mine turns to England and the wonderful family I've acquired by marriage. I've been missing it a lot these days, particularly Rugby and Dunchurch, so I've been indulging by going through photos, and reading the copy of Forever England: The Life of Rupert Brooke that my mum-in-law gave me.

You are so very lucky to live in such a beautiful place.