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THOMAS HOOD
English poet and humorist
(1799 - 1845)
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And daisy-stars, whose firmament is green.
      - Plea of the Midsummer Fairies (36)
        [Daisies]

Spontaneously to God should turn the soul,
  Like the magnetic needle to the pole;
    But what were that intrinsic virtue worth,
      Suppose some fellow, with more zeal than knowledge,
        Fresh from St. Andrew's College,
          Should nail the conscious needle to the north?
      - Poem addressed to Rae Wilson [Influence]

Oh, when I was a tiny boy
  My days and nights were full of joy.
    My mates were blithe and kind!
      No wonder that I sometimes sigh
        And dash the tear drop from my eye
          To cast a look behind!
      - Retrospective Review [Childhood]

She stood breast-high amid the corn,
  Clasp'd by the golden light of morn,
    Like the sweetheart of the sun,
      Who many a glowing kiss had won.
      - Ruth [Sun]

Such a blush
  In the midst of brown was born,
    Like red poppies grown with corn.
      - Ruth [Blushes]

Stoop where thou wilt, thy careless hand
  Some random bud will meet;
    Thou canst not tread, but thou wilt find
      The daisy at thy feet.
      - Song [Daisies]

While the steeples are loud in their joy,
  To the tune of the bells' ring-a-ding,
    Let us chime in a peal, one and all,
      For we all should be able to sing Hullah baloo.
      - Song for the Million [Bells]

It is not linen you're wearing out,
  But human creatures' lives.
      - Song of the Shirt [Apparel : Cruelty]

My tears must stop, for every drop
  Hinders needle and thread.
      - Song of the Shirt [Tears]

No blessed leisure for Love or Hope,
  But only time for Grief.
      - Song of the Shirt [Leisure]

Oh! God! that bread should be so dear,
  And flesh and blood so cheap!
      - Song of the Shirt [Life]

Oh, God! that bread should be so dear,
  And flesh and blood so cheap!
      - Song of the Shirt [Humanity]

With fingers weary and worn,
  With eyelids heavy and red,
    A woman sat in unwomanly rags,
      Plying her needle and thread.
      - Song of the Shirt [Labor]

Stitch! stitch! stitch!
  In poverty, hunger, and dirt,
    And still with a voice of dolorous pitch,
      Would that its tone could reach the Rich,
        She sang this "Song of the Shirt!"
      - Song of the Shirt (st. 11) [Poverty]

No popular respect will I omit
  To do the honour on this happy day,
    When every loyal lover tasks his wit
      His simple truth in studious rhymes to pay,
        And to his mistress dear his hopes convey.
          Rather thou knowest I would still outrun
            All calendars with Love's whose date alway
              Thy bright eyes govern better than the Sun,--
                For with thy favour was my life begun,
                  And still I reckon on from smiles to smiles,
                    And not by summers, for I thrive on none
                      But those thy cheerful countenance compiles;
                        Oh! if it be to choose and call thee mine,
                          Love, thou art every day my Valentine!
      - Sonnet--For the 14th of February
        [Valentines]

There is a silence where hath been no sound,
  There is a silence where no sound may be,
    In the cold grave--under the deep, deep sea,
      Or in wide desert where no life is found,
        Which hath been mute, and still must sleep profound.
      - Sonnets--Silence [Silence]

Alas! for the rarity
  Of Christian charity
    Under the sun.
      Oh! it was pitiful!
        Near a whole city full,
          Home had she none.
      - The Bridge of Sighs [Philanthropy]

Some sigh for this and that;
  My wishes don't go far;
    The world may wag at will,
      So I have my cigar.
      - The Cigar [Tobacco]

We watch'd her breathing thro' the night,
  Her breathing soft and low,
    As in her breast the wave of life
      Kept heaving to and fro.
        . . . .
          Our very hopes belied our fears,
            Our fears our hopes belied;
              We though her dying when she slept,
                And sleeping when she died.
      - The Death-bed [Death]

Some dreams we have are nothing else but dreams,
  Unnatural and full of contradictions;
    Yet others of our most romantic schemes
      Are something more than fictions.
      - The Haunted House (pt. I) [Dreams]

But evil is wrought by want of Thought,
  As well as want of Heart!
      - The Lady's Dream (st. 16) [Evil]

Well, something must be done for May,
  The time is drawing nigh--
    To figure in the Catalogue,
      And woo the public eye.
        Something I must invent and paint;
          But oh my wit is not
            Like one of those kind substantives
              That answer Who and What?
      - The Painter Puzzled [Painting]

And soon
  Their hushing dances languished to a stand,
    Like midnight leaves when, as the Zephyrs swoon,
      All on their drooping stems they sink unfanned.
      - The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies
        [Zephyrs]

O God! that bread should be so dear,
  And flesh and blood so cheap!
      - The Song of the Shirt [Poverty]

It's very hard! Oh, Dick, my boy,
  It's very hard one can't enjoy
    A little private spouting;
      But sure as Lear or Hamlet lives,
        Up comes our master, Bounce! and gives
          The tragic Muse a routing.
      - The Stage-Struck Hero [Acting]


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