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Benedicta’s story: from ‘A Shropshire Lad’ Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Posted by carryapoem in Stories.

I’ve chosen a poem which is very dear to my heart. I have an eighty-five-year-old father who learned a lot of poetry by heart when he was young and growing up, and he remembers it wonderfully today. He recites a poem every spring when the cherry trees where he lives come into blossom. It’s a lovely poem by A E Housman:

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with snow along the bow,
And stands about the woodland ride,
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now of my threescore years and ten
Twenty will not come again.
And take from seventy Springs a score,
It leaves me only fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty Springs is little room,
About the woodland I will go,
To see the cherry, hung with snow.

Benedicta Page is the associate editor of the Bookseller


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