Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
 
The Fairies
 
William Allingham (1824–89)
 
 
A Child’s Song
 
 
UP the airy mountain,
    Down the rushy glen,
We dare n’t go a-hunting
    For fear of little men;
Wee folk, good folk,        5
    Trooping all together;
Green jacket, red cap,
    And white owl’s feather!
 
Down along the rocky shore
    Some make their home,—        10
They live on crispy pancakes
    Of yellow tide-foam;
Some in the reeds
    Of the black mountain-lake,
With frogs for their watch-dogs,        15
    All night awake.
 
High on the hill-top
    The old King sits;
He is now so old and gray
    He ’s nigh lost his wits.        20
With a bridge of white mist
    Columbkill he crosses,
On his stately journeys
    From Slieveleague to Rosses;
Or going up with music        25
    On cold starry nights,
To sup with the Queen
    Of the gay Northern Lights.
 
They stole little Bridget
    For seven years long;        30
When she came down again
    Her friends were all gone.
They took her lightly back,
    Between the night and morrow,
They thought that she was fast asleep,        35
    But she was dead with sorrow.
They have kept her ever since
    Deep within the lakes,
On a bed of flag-leaves,
    Watching till she wakes.        40
 
By the craggy hill-side,
    Through the mosses bare,
They have planted thorn-trees
    For pleasure here and there.
Is any man so daring        45
    As dig one up in spite,
He shall find the thornies set
    In his bed at night.
 
Up the airy mountain,
    Down the rushy glen,        50
We dare n’t go a-hunting
    For fear of little men;
Wee folk, good folk,
    Trooping all together;
Green jacket, red cap,        55
    And white owl’s feather!
 

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