Sunday Poetry – Sylvia Townsend Warner

Another poem from STW’s Selected Poetry. I love the atmosphere of warmth within & chill without that she conjures up so easily in just three verses. I wonder how long he’s going away for? Is it just a quick trip to the shops or is he leaving forever? The poem is called The House Grown Silent.

After he had gone the wind rose,
Buffeting the house and rumbling in the chimney,
And I thought: It will roar against him like a lion
As onward he goes.

Seven miles before him, all told – 
Chilled will be the lips I kissed so warm at parting,
Kissed in vain; for he’s forth in the wind, and kisses
Won’t keep out the cold.

Closer should I have kissed, and fondlier prayed:
Pleasant is the room in the wakeful firelight,
And within is the bed, arrayed with peace and safety.
Would he have stayed!

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