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Image by Caroline Forbes

Variation on an Old Rhyme

John Mole


Variation on an Old Rhyme

John Mole


Variation on an Old Rhyme

Variation On An Old Rhyme

This is the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

These are the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the wonderland of white
That surrounds the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the quarrel that started the fight
That stains the wonderland of white
That surrounds the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

This is the wrong that none can put right
That caused the quarrel that started the fight
That stains the wonderland of white
That surrounds the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

These are the nations in all their might
That suffer the wrong that none can put right
That caused the quarrel that started the fight
That stains the wonderland of white
That surrounds the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines for the blackbird that wakes with a song.

And this is the song that goes on in spite
Of all the nations in all their might
That suffer the wrong that none can put right
That causes the quarrels that start every fight
That stains the wonderland of white
That surrounds the children that cry with delight
That play in the snow that fell through the night
That covers the earth
That welcomes the sun
That shines just the same on everyone.


from New and Selected Poems (Peterloo Poets, 2004), copyright © John Mole 2004, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Recordings

John Mole Reading from his Poems

1The War

2Lottery Draft

3Coming Home

4Actually

5Travellers

6Simpleton

7The Walking Bell

8The Birthday

9The Wolf-Mask

10Alice and Alice

11Ghost Story

12The Pelican

13Jack-in-the-Box

14The Balancing Man

15Song of the Hat-Raising Doll

16Variation on an Old Rhyme

17Dream Girl

18When Tommy Cooper Died on Stage

19Answer Phone

20Fats

21Walking

22Across the Lawn

23The Loss

24The Cherry Tree

25La Jeunesse

26Revenant

27That Afternoon

28This Moment

29The Waterfall

30Inheriting the Album

31Serenade

32A Different Ending

33Not Too Late