London’s Summer Morning by Mary Robinson

Discussion in 'Poem of the Day' started by FlamingFeenix, Jun 30, 2011.

  1. FlamingFeenix

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    Who has not waked to list the busy sounds
    Of summer’s morning, in the sultry smoke
    Of noisy London? On the pavement hot
    The sooty chimney-boy, with dingy face
    And tattered covering, shrilly bawls his trade,
    Rousing the sleepy housemaid. At the door
    The milk-pail rattles, and the tinkling bell
    Proclaims the dustman’s office; while the street
    Is lost in clouds impervious. Now begins
    The din of hackney-coaches, waggons, carts;
    While tinmen’s shops, and noisy trunk-makers,
    Knife-grinders, coopers, squeaking cork-cutters,
    Fruit-barrows, and the hunger-giving cries
    Of vegetable-vendors, fill the air.
    Now every shop displays its varied trade,
    And the fresh-sprinkled pavement cools the feet
    Of early walkers. At the private door
    The ruddy housemaid twirls the busy mop,
    Annoying the smart ’prentice, or neat girl,
    Tripping with band-box lightly. Now the sun
    Darts burning splendor on the glittering pane,
    Save where the canvas awning throws a shade
    On the gay merchandise. Now, spruce and trim,
    In shops (where beauty smiles with industry)
    Sits the smart damsel; while the passenger
    Peeps through the window, watching every charm.
    Now pastry dainties catch the eye minute
    Of humming insects, while the limy snare
    Waits to enthrall them. Now the lamp-lighter
    Mounts the tall ladder, nimbly venturous,
    To trim the half-filled lamps, while at his feet
    The pot-boy yells discordant! All along
    The sultry pavement, the old-clothes-man cries
    In tone monotonous, while sidelong views
    The area for his traffic: now the bag
    Is slyly opened, and the half-worn suit
    (Sometimes the pilfered treasure of the base
    Domestic spoiler), for one half its worth,
    Sinks in the green abyss. The porter now
    Bears his huge load along the burning way;
    And the poor poet wakes from busy dreams,
    To paint the summer morning.

    [fieldset=About This Poem]
    • Poet:
      Mary Robinson (1758–1800)

    • Poet's Region:

    • School / Period:

    • Poetic Terms:
      Blank Verse

    Source: The Longman Anthology of Poetry (2006)[/fieldset]
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