Classic and Contemporary Poetry
THEY BOY-FRIEND, by JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY Poet's Biography
First Line: Clarence, my boy-friend, hale
Last Line: Is this brave boy-friend of mine.
Alternate Author Name(s): Johnson Of Boone, Benj. F.
Subject(s): Love; Rhyme; Singing & Singers; Soul
CLARENCE, my boy-friend, hale and strong!
O he is as jolly as he is young;
And all of the laughs of the lyre belong
To the boy all unsung:
So I want to sing something in his behalf --
To clang some chords, for the good it is
To know he is near, and to have the laugh
Of that wholesome voice of his.
I want to tell him in gentler ways
Than prose may do, that the arms of rhyme,
Warm and tender with tuneful praise,
Are about him all the time.
I want him to know that the quietest nights
We have passed together are yet with me,
Roistering over the old delights
That were born of his company.
I want him to know how my soul esteems
The fairy stories of Andersen,
And the glad translations of all the themes
Of the hearts of boyish men.
Want him to know that my fancy flows,
With the lilt of a dear old-fashioned tune,
Through "Lewis Carroll's" poemly prose,
And the tale of "The Bold Dragoon."
O this is the Prince that I would sing --
Would drape and garnish in velvet line,
Since courtlier far than any king
Is this brave boy-friend of mine.
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