poem index

sign up to receive a new poem-a-day in your inbox

Old English riddle

Anonymous

My dress is silent when I tread the ground 
Or stay at home or stir upon the waters.
Sometimes my trappings and the lofty air
Raise me above the dwelling-place of men,
And then the power of clouds carries me far
Above the people; and my ornaments
Loudly resound, send forth a melody
And clearly sing, when I am not in touch
With earth or water, but a flying spirit.

Anonymous

by this poet

poem
The maidens came 
   When I was in my mother's bower;
I had all that I would.
   The bailey beareth the bell away;
   The lily, the rose, the rose I lay.
The silver is white, red is the gold;
The robes they lay in fold.
   The bailey beareth the bell away;
   The lily, the rose, the rose I lay.
And through the
poem
There was a lady loved a swine,
     "Honey!" quoth she;
"Pig-hog, wilt thou be mine?"
     "Hoogh!" quoth he.

"I'll build thee a silver sty,
     Honey!" quoth she;
"And in it thou shalt lie!"
     "Hoogh!" quoth he.

"Pinned with a silver pin,
     Honey!" quoth she;
"That thou mayest go out and in,"
     "
2
poem
To my people it's as though he gave them a sacrifice:
They will destroy him if he comes among them.
   It is otherwise with us.

Wulf is on one island, I on another.
A fastness is that island, rung round with fens.
Fierce men are there on the island.
They will destroy him if he comes among them.
   It is