Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE CHILD AN' THE MOWERS, by WILLIAM BARNES

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THE CHILD AN' THE MOWERS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: O. Aye! They had woone child bezide
Last Line: Aye! The zwath-flow'r's a-killed by the zun.
Subject(s): Death - Children; Farm Life; Mowing & Mowers; Death - Babies; Agriculture; Farmers; Lawn Mowers

O, aye! they had woone child bezide,
An' a finer your eyes never met,
'Twer a dear little fellow that died
In the zummer that come wi' such het;
By the mowers, too thoughtless in fun,
He wer then a-zent off vrom our eyes,
Vrom the light ov the dew-dryèn zun, –
Aye! vrom days under blue-hollow'd skies.

He went out to the mowers in meäd,
When the zun wer a-rose to his height,
An' the men wer a-swingèn the sneäd,
Wi' their eärms in white sleeves, left an' right;
An' out there, as they rested at noon,
O! they drench'd en vrom eäle-horns too deep,
Till his thoughts wer a-drown'd in a swoon;
Aye! his life wer a-smother'd in sleep.

Then they laid en there-right on the ground,
On a grass-heap, a-zweltrèn wi' het,
Wi' his heäir all a-wetted around
His young feäce, wi' the big drops o' zweat;
In his little left palm he'd a-zet,
Wi' his right hand, his vore-vinger's tip,
As vor zome'hat he woulden vorget, –
Aye! zome thought that he woulden let slip.

Then they took en in hwome to his bed,
An' he rose vrom his pillow noo mwore,
Vor the curls on his sleek little head
To be blown by the wind out o' door.
Vor he died while the haÿ russled grey
On the staddle so leätely begun:
Lik' the mown-grass a-dried by the day, –
Aye! the zwath-flow'r's a-killed by the zun.

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