Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
Women Singing
By Sir Henry Taylor (1800–1886)
 
Thorbiorga sings:
          BY Wellesbourne and Charlcote ford,
          At break of day, I saw a sword.
          Wessex warriors, rank by rank,
          Rose on Avon’s hither bank;
          Mercia’s men in fair array        5
          Look’d at them from Marraway;
          Close and closer ranged they soon,
          And the battle join’d at noon.
 
          By Wellesbourne and Charlcote Lea
          I heard a sound as of the sea:        10
          Thirty thousand rushing men,
          Twenty thousand met by ten;
          Rang the shield and brake the shaft,
          Tosty yell’d, Harcather laugh’d;
          Thoro’ Avon’s waters red        15
          Chased by ten the twenty fled.
 
          By Charlcote ford and Wellesbourne
          I saw the moon’s pale face forlorn.
          River flow’d and rushes sigh’d,
          Wounded warriors groan’d and died;        20
          Ella took his early rest,
          The raven stood on his white breast;
          Hoarsely in the dead man’s ear
          Raven whisper’d, ‘Friend, good cheer!
          Ere the winter pinch the crow        25
          He that slew thee shall lie low.’
 
Heida sings:
          Love ye wisely, love ye well;
          Challenge then the gates of Hell!
          Love and Truth can ride it out,
          Come bridal song or battle shout.        30
 
 
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