On the Idle Hill of Summer



On the idle hill of summer,
Sleepy with the flow of streams,
Far I hear the steady drummer
Drumming like a noise in dreams.

Far and near and low and louder
On the roads of earth go by,
Dear to friends and food for powder,
Soldiers marching, all to die.

East and west on fields forgotten
Bleach the bones of comrades slain,
Lovely lads and dead and rotten;
None that go return again.

Far the calling bugles hollo,
High the screaming fife replies,
Gay the files of scarlet follow:
Woman bore me, I will rise.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

Modified on April 27, 2023

29 sec read
214

Quick analysis:

Scheme ABAB ACAC DEDE FGFG
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 510
Words 97
Stanzas 4
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4

Alfred Edward Housman

Alfred Edward Housman, usually known as A. E. Housman, was an English classical scholar and poet, best known to the general public for his cycle of poems A Shropshire Lad.  more…

All Alfred Edward Housman poems | Alfred Edward Housman Books

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    "On the Idle Hill of Summer" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 Jul 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/903/on-the-idle-hill-of-summer>.

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