It's the very worst thing you could do, do, do,
It's the very worst thing you could do."
He slipped like a monkey up into a tree,
He shook her down cherries like rain;
"See now," says he, cheeping, "a blackbird I be,
Laugh, laugh, little Jinnie, again--gain--gain,
Laugh, laugh, little Jinnie, again."
Ah me! what a strange, what a gladsome duet
From a house in the deeps of a wood!
Such shrill and such harsh voices never met yet
A-laughing as loud as they could, could, could,
A-laughing as loud as they could.
Come Jinnie, come dwarf, cocksparrow, and bee,
There's a ring gaudy-green in the dell,
Sing, sing, ye sweet cherubs, that flit in the tree;
La! who can draw tears from a well, well, well,
Who ever drew tears from a well!
The sun is clear of bird and cloud,
The grass shines windless, grey and still,
In dusky ruin the owl dreams on,
The cuckoo echoes on the hill;
Yet soft along Alulvan's walks
The ghost at noonday stalks.
His eyes in shadow of his hat
Stare on the ruins of his house;
His cloak, up-fastened with a brooch,
Of faded velvet grey as mouse,
Brushes the roses as he goes:
Yet wavers not one rose.
The wild birds in a cloud fly up
From their sweet feeding in the fruit;
The droning of the bees and flies
Rises gradual as a lute;
Is it for fear the birds are flown,
And shrills the insect-drone?
Thick is the ivy over Alulvan,
And crisp with summer-heat its turf;
Far, far across its empty pastures
Alulvan's sands are white with surf:
And he himself is grey as the sea,
Watching beneath an elder-tree.
All night the fretful, shrill Banshee
Lurks in the ivy's dark festoons,
Calling for ever, o'er garden and river,
Through magpie changing of the moons:
"Alulvan, O, alas! Alulvan,
The doom of lone Alulvan!"