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Walter de la Mare

Walter de la Mare (1873–1956) was an English poet, short story writer, and novelist.


Second Thoughts

Spring 1953 | Poetry

Gone the promise, pains, and care—All I’d seemed to squander here!Now I read what then I writEven sense has forsaken it. Whither must my heart have flown,Leaving head to drudge alone?Whither can my wits have strayedTo let such lifeless things [...]

Three Poems

To a Candle Burn stilly, thou; and come with me; I'll screen thy radiance.—Look, and see Where, like a flower furled, Sealed from this anxious world, Tranquil brow, and lid, and lip, One I love lies here asleep. Resting on her pillow is A hea [...]

The Trumpet

The minute church, obscurely lit by a full moon that had not yet found window-glass through which her direct beams could pierce into its gloaming, was deserted and silent. Not a sound, within or without, disturbed its stony quiet—except only the in [...]

The Picnic

There was an empty, pensive look on Miss Curtis's face as she stood there, solitary, by the (as yet un-blinded) shop door, the finger and thumb of her small firm hand idly twisting the pencil stuck in between the two little black buttons of her black [...]


Only one traveller alighted from the 2:17 train that springtime afternoon at the tiny country station—so spick and span that it seemed to be positively preening itself in its fresh bright brown and white paint under the immense blue dome of the sky [...]

The Three Sleeping Boys of Warwickshire

In a low-ceiled white-washed room on the uppermost floor of a red-brick building in Pleasant Street, Cheriton, and arranged in rows of neat glazed cases, is a collection of shells, conchs, seaweeds, seabirds—albatross, kitti-wake, cormorant—goggl [...]

The Vision

O starry face, bound in grave strands of hair, Aloof, remote, past word or thought to bless, Life's haunting mystery and the soul's long care, Music unheard, heart's inmost silentness, Beauty this earthly life can ne'er fulfil— Thou garnered l [...]

The Tomtit

Twilight had fall'n, austere and grey— The darkening ashes of a dying day— When, lo, tip-tap at window-pane, My visitor had come again, To peck late supper at his ease, A morsel of suspended cheese. What ancient code, what Morse was his— [...]


Now lullay, my sweeting, What hast thou to fear? It is only the wind In the willows we hear, And the sigh of the waves By the sand dunes, my dear. Stay thy wailing. Let sleep be Thy solace, thou dear; And dreams that shall charm From that c [...]