Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, HOW CAN I SING?, by FREDERICK C. BODEN



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HOW CAN I SING?, by            
First Line: Loudly the chanticleer now crows
Last Line: And wake them up that I may sing.
Subject(s): Dawn; Singing & Singers; Sunrise; Songs


Loudly the chanticleer now crows,
So loud he makes the morning ring,
He'll wake men up, so hard he blows,
But till he does I cannot sing.

How can I sing while others weep
And groan beneath their travailing,
And cry a God who's fast asleep
And hears them not—how can I sing?

How can I sing when I've no salve
For putrid sore and deadly sting?—
And people sleep in rags and starve
And will not wake—how can I sing?

There's better men alive to-day
Than God or any such poor thing,
And yet the nations rob and slay
And will not cease.—How can I sing?

O chanticleer that sounds the dawn,
Now rouse them with your heralding,
O chanticleer, you bring the morn,
And till you do I cannot sing.

For men sleep sound and would not hear
And 'twill be vain, my flute-playing,
So sound your note, you chanticleer,
And wake them up that I may sing.





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