Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, CRADLE SONG, by ALICE CARY



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CRADLE SONG, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: All by the sides of the wide wild river
Last Line: Lull lull, lull lull, lull lullaby!
Subject(s): Children; Mothers; Childhood


All by the sides of the wide wild river
Surging sad through the sodden land,
There be the black reeds washing together--
Washing together in rain and sand;
Going, blowing, flowing, together--
Rough are the winds, and the tide runs high--
Hush, little babe, in thy silken cradle--
Lull lull, lull lull, lull lullaby!

Father is riding home, little baby,
Riding home through the wind and rain;
Flinty hoofs on the flag stems beating
Thrum like a flail on the golden grain.
All in the wild, wet reeds of the lowlands,
Dashed and plashed with the freezing foam,
There be the blood-red wings of the starlings,
Shining to light and lead him home.

Spurring hard o'er the grass-gray ridges--
Slacking rein in the low, wet land,
Where be the black reeds washing together--
Washing together in rain and sand.
Down of the yellow-throated creeper--
Plumes of the woodcock, green and black--
Boughs of salix, and combs of honey--
These be the gifts he is bearing back.

Yester morning four sweet ground-doves
Sung so gay to their nest in the wall--
Oh, by the moaning, and oh, by the droning,
The wild, wild water is over them all!
Come, O morning, come with thy roses,
Flame like a burning bush in the sky--
Hush, little babe, in thy silken cradle--
Lull lull, lull lull, lull lullaby!





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