Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, COCK-CROWING, by HENRY DAVID THOREAU

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

COCK-CROWING, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Upon my bed at early dawn
Last Line: And through the fields had sprinkled perfumed dew.
Subject(s): Dawn; Time; Sunrise

Upon my bed at early dawn
I hear the cocks proclaim the day,
Though the moon shines serenely on,
As if her queenly course they could not stay --

Nor pull her down with their faint din
From riding at that lofty height,
Who in her shining knows no sin,
As if unconscious of a nobler light.

Far in the east their larum rings,
As if a watchful host there thronged,
Where now its early clarion sings,
So bravely is their martial note prolonged.

One on more distant perch, more clear,
But fainter brags him still,
But ah! he promises, I fear,
More than his master's household will fulfill.

The stars withhold their shining not
Or singly or in scattered crowds,
But seem like Parthian arrows shot
By yielding night 'mid the advancing clouds.

Some wakeful steer exalts his trump
Afar oer the sonorous ground,
And with a sounding eastern pomp
It grandly marcheth the horizon round.

Invades each recess of the wood,
Awakes each slumbering bird,
Till every fowl leads forth her brood,
Which on her nest the tuneful summons heard.

Methinks that Time has reached his prime,
Eternity is in the flower,
I hear their faint confused chime
Now ushering in the sacred hour.

Over the hill top I have run
For fear to be too late,
I've left behind the luggard sun,
Travelling at such a rate,
To be in at creation,
To be up with fate.

And has time got so forward then?
From what perennial fount of joy,
Do ye inspire the hearts of men,
And teach them how the day-light to employ?

From your abundance pray impart
Who dost so freely spill,
Some bravery unto my heart,
Or let me taste of thy perennial rill.

There is such health and length of years
In the elixir of that note,
That God himself more young appears,
And a more youthful world through space doth float.

The tidy night with woolen feet,
I'm sure has lately passed this way,
And with her trim despatch so neat,
She has arranged the furniture of the day.

In yon thin sheet of mist spread oer
The lowland trees of leaves bereft,
Which round her head at eve she wore,
Methinks I see the housewife's duster left.

The fragrant mist exhales the scent
Of aromatic herbs, so you
Would say she blest whereer she went,
And through the fields had sprinkled perfumed dew.

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