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William Ernest Henley (1849-1903)

The Rain and the Wind


              1The rain and the wind, the wind and the rain --
              2    They are with us like a disease:
              3They worry the heart, they work the brain,
              4As they shoulder and clutch at the shrieking pane,
              5    And savage the helpless trees.

              6What does it profit a man to know
              7    These tattered and tumbling skies
              8A million stately stars will show,
              9And the ruining grace of the after-glow
            10    And the rush of the wild sunrise?

            11Ever the rain -- the rain and the wind!
            12    Come, hunch with me over the fire,
            13Dream of the dreams that leered abd grinned,
            14Ere the blood of the Year got chilled and thinned,
            15    And the death came on desire!


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: William Ernest Henley, "Hawthorn and Lavender, XLIII" Poems (London: Macmillan and Co., 1920): 183. PR 4783 A36 1921 Robarts Library
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1996-2000.
Recent editing: 4:2002/4/24

Composition date: 1899 - 1901
Rhyme: abaab


Other poems by William Ernest Henley