Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. V. Nature
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume V. Nature.  1904.
III. The Seasons
The Hunter’s Song
Bryan Waller Procter (Barry Cornwall) (1787–1874)
RISE! Sleep no more! ’T is a noble morn.
The dews hang thick on the fringèd thorn,
And the frost shrinks back like a beaten hound,
Under the steaming, steaming ground.
Behold, where the billowy clouds flow by,        5
And leave us alone in the clear gray sky!
Our horses are ready and steady.—So, ho!
I ’m gone, like a dart from the Tartar’s bow.
Hark, hark!—Who calleth the maiden Morn
From her sleep in the woods and the stubble corn?        10
          The horn,—the horn!
The merry, sweet ring of the hunter’s horn.
Now, through the copse where the fox is found,
And over the stream at a mighty bound,
And over the high lands and over the low,        15
O’er furrows, o’er meadows, the hunters go!
Away!—as a hawk flies full at his prey,
So flieth the hunter, away, away!
From the burst at the cover till set of sun,
When the red fox dies, and—the day is done.        20
Hark, hark!—What sound on the wind is borne?
’T is the conquering voice of the hunter’s horn:
          The horn,—the horn!
The merry, bold voice of the hunter’s horn.
Sound! Sound the horn! To the hunter good        25
What ’s the gully deep or the roaring flood?
Right over he bounds, as the wild stag bounds,
At the heels of his swift, sure, silent hounds.
Oh, what delight can a mortal lack,
When he once is firm on his horse’s back,        30
With his stirrups short, and his snaffle strong,
And the blast of the horn for his morning song?
Hark, hark!—Now home! and dream till morn
Of the bold, sweet sound of the hunter’s horn!
          The horn,—the horn!        35
Oh, the sound of all sounds is the hunter’s horn!

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