The Literary Maiden

A compendium of obscure 19th century writing.

Tag: Francis Ledwidge

“Waiting” by Francis Ledwidge

Francis Ledwidge
From The Complete Poems of Francis Ledwidge

A strange old woman on the wayside sate,
Looked far away and shook her head and sighed.
And when anon, close by, a rusty gate
Loud on the warm winds cried,
She lifted up her eyes and said, “You’re late.”
Then shook her head and sighed.

And evening found her thus, and night in state
Walked thro’ the starlight, and a heavy tide
Followed the yellow moon around her wait,
And morning walked in wide.
She lifted up her eyes and said, “You’re late.”
Then shook her head and sighed.

“On An Oaten Straw” by Francis Ledwidge

I promised more Ledwidge, and so here we go.

On An Oaten Straw

By Francis Ledwidge
From Songs of the Fields, pg. 96

My harp is out of tune, and so I take
An oaten straw some shepherd dropped of old.
It is the hour when Beauty doth awake
With trembling limbs upon the dewy cold.
And shapes of green show where the woolly fold
Slept in the winding shelter of the brake.

This I will pipe for you, how all the year
The one I love like Beauty takes her way.
Wrapped in the wind of winter she doth cheer
The loud woods like a sunbeam of the May.
This I will pipe for you the whole blue day
Seated with Pan upon the mossy weir.

“August” by Francis Ledwidge

I’ve greatly enjoyed reading the poetry of Irish poet and soldier Francis Ledwidge as of late, so I anticipate uploading more of his work in the future. “August” is a personal favorite. Feel free to comment, I’d love your thoughts on Ledwidge. Are you already familiar with his work? Would you like to see more?


By Francis Ledwidge
From Songs of the Fields by Francis Ledwidge

SHE’LL come at dusky first of day,
White over yellow harvest’s song.
Upon her dewy rainbow way
She shall be beautiful and strong.
The lidless eye of noon shall spray
Tan on her ankles in the hay,
Shall kiss her brown the whole day long.

I’ll know her in the windrows, tall
Above the crickets of the hay.
I’ll know her when her odd eyes fall,
One May-blue, one November-grey.
I’ll watch her from the red barn wall
Take down her rusty scythe, and call,
And I will follow her away.