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John Crowe Ransom: Bells for John Whiteside’s Daughter

There was such speed in her little body,   
And such lightness in her footfall,   
It is no wonder her brown study
Astonishes us all.

Her wars were bruited in our high window.   
We looked among orchard trees and beyond   
Where she took arms against her shadow,   
Or harried unto the pond

The lazy geese, like a snow cloud
Dripping their snow on the green grass,   
Tricking and stopping, sleepy and proud,   
Who cried in goose, Alas,

For the tireless heart within the little   
Lady with rod that made them rise
From their noon apple-dreams and scuttle   
Goose-fashion under the skies!

But now go the bells, and we are ready,   
In one house we are sternly stopped
To say we are vexed at her brown study,   
Lying so primly propped.

Public Domain

John Crowe Ransom (1888 – 1974) was an American educator, scholar, literary critic, poet, essayist and editor. He is considered to be a founder of the New Criticism school of literary criticism. As a faculty member at Kenyon College, he was the first editor of the widely regarded Kenyon Review. Highly respected as a teacher and mentor to a generation of accomplished students, he also was a prize-winning poet and essayist.

4 comments on “John Crowe Ransom: Bells for John Whiteside’s Daughter

  1. edisonmarshalljenningsgmailcom
    November 18, 2022

    a great poem

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sean Sexton
    November 18, 2022

    Classic poetry!
    What a treat.

    Like

    • Vox Populi
      November 18, 2022

      Thanks, Sean. I’ve loved this poem since I first read it as a teenager.

      >

      Like

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This entry was posted on November 18, 2022 by in Most Popular, Opinion Leaders, Poetry and tagged , , , .

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