Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, BUCOLIC COMEDY: SPINNING SONG, by EDITH SITWELL



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BUCOLIC COMEDY: SPINNING SONG, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The miller's daughter
Last Line: "if the spinning-wheel time move slow or fast."
Subject(s): Spinning


THE miller's daughter
Combs her hair,
Like flocks of doves
As soft as vair . . .

Oh, how those soft flocks flutter down
Over the empty grassy town.

Like a queen in a crown
Of gold light, she
Sits 'neath the shadows'
Flickering tree --

Till the old dame went the way she came,
Playing bobcherry with a candle-flame.

Now Min the cat
With her white velvet gloves
Watches where sat
The mouse with her loves --

(Old and malicious Mrs. Grundy
Whose washing-day is from Monday to Monday.)

"Not a crumb," said Min,
"To a mouse I'll be giving,
For a mouse must spin
To earn her living."

So poor Mrs. Mouse and her three cross Aunts
Nibble snow that rustles like gold wheat plants.

And the miller's daughter
Combs her locks,
Like running water
Those dove-soft flocks;

And her mouth is sweet as a honey-flower cold
But her heart is heavy as bags of gold.

The shadow-mice said
"We will line with down
From those doves, our bed
And our slippers and gown,

For everything comes to the shadows at last
If the spinning-wheel Time move slow or fast."





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