Wednesday 20 December 2017

Winter poem by the 19th century Norwegian poet Johan Sebastian Welhaven

The snow’s now falling thick and fast

The snow’s now falling thick and fast,
And the boy runs hither and thither.
A great many miles does he slither
And slide now before the day’s past.

Great blocks of snow in the courtyard he rolls,
And into stout soldiers he makes them;
Much effort and toil does it take him.
The soldiers are given eyes made of coal.

He trundles the snow as if in a trance,
While the towering warriors stand gazing;
A breastwork he now works on raising.
The broomstick he gives them serves as a lance.

And now he is done, and his strength is no more;
His hands are both frozen and stinging.
With strong dreams soon to be winging
A restless night the boy has in store.

You hear him exclaim, the tired little one:
‘Tomorrow they all will do battle!’
Then rainclouds the sky shake and rattle,
And his warriors soon are all gone.

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