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
Morning in May
Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1340–1400)
From “The Canterbury Pilgrims: The Knightes Tale

  THE BUSY 1 larke, messager of daye,
Salueth in hire song the morwe graye;
And fyry Phebus ryseth up so brighte,
That al the orient laugheth of the lighte,
And with his stremes dryeth in the greves 2        5
The silver dropes, hongyng on the leeves.
And Arcite, that is in the court ryal
With Theseus, his squyer principal,
Is risen, and loketh on the merye day.
And for to doon his observaunce to May,        10
Remembryng on the poynt of his desir,
He on his courser, stertyng as the fir, 3
Is riden, into the feeldes him to pleye, 4
Out of the court, were it a myle or tweye.
And to the grove, of which that I yow tolde,        15
By aventure his wey he gan to holde,
To maken him a garland of the greves,
Were it of woodebynde or hawethorn leves,
And lowde he song ayens the sonne scheene:
“May, with alle thy floures and thy greene,        20
Welcome be thou, wel faire fressche May,
I hope that I som greene gete may.”
Note 1. Text of the Clarendon Series. [back]
Note 2. Groves. [back]
Note 3. Fire. [back]
Note 4. Play. [back]

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