Robert Graves

Nine O'Clock

Robert von Ranke Graves was an English poet, scholar/translator/writer of antiquity specializing in Classical Greece and Rome, novelist and soldier in World War One.


Nine of the clock, oh!
Wake my lazy head!
Your shoes of red morocco,
Your silk bed-gown:
Rouse, rouse, speck-eyed Mary
In your high bed!
A yawn, a smile, sleepy-starey,
Mary climbs down.
'Good-morning to my brothers,
Good-day to the Sun,
Halloo, halloo to the lily-white sheep
That up the mountain run.'


Good-night to the meadow, farewell to the nine o'clock Sun,
'He loves me not, loves me, he loves me not' (O jealous one!)
'He loves me, he loves me not, loves me'--O soft nights of June,
A bird sang for love on the cherry-bough: up swam the Moon.