A.E. Houseman: How Clear, How Lovely Bright

Auguste Renoir, By the Seashore, 1883, Source: The Met
How Clear, How Lovely Bright 
– A.E. Houseman

How clear, how lovely bright,
How beautiful to sight
    Those beams of morning play;
How heaven laughs out with glee
Where, like a bird set free,
Up from the eastern sea    
    Soars the delightful day.

To-day I shall be strong,
No more shall yield to wrong,
    Shall squander life no more;
Days lost, I know not how,
I shall retrieve them now;
Now I shall keep the vow
    I never kept before.

Ensanguining the skies
How heavily it dies
    Into the west away;
Past touch and sight and sound
Not further to be found,
How hopeless under ground
    Falls the remorseful day

Hat Tip

Thanks to Sister Renee at Lavish Mercy who introduced me to this poem in her post No Regrets.

Read More

A Short Analysis of A. E. Housman’s ‘How Clear, How Lovely Bright’, by Dr. Oliver Tearle

Thanks for Visiting 🙂


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Thanks, Sunny. Lovely! How sweet is that Renoir face!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good morning, Sister Renee. Thanks for visiting. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oloriel says:

    My all time favourite poem, makes my day when I see his work, so thank you for sharing it!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Welcome, Gloria! Thanks for visiting. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. jjhiii24 says:

    This poem is lovely bright and clear to the reader who can appreciate the poet’s viewpoint, recorded on what seems like a spectacular day, and the astute descriptions frankly make one envious of his experience of it.

    My favorite A.E. Houseman poem previously was “From Far, From Eve and Morning,” where he solicits a response from another by saying:

    Now–for a breath I tarry
    Nor yet disperse apart–
    Take my hand quick and tell me,
    What have you in your heart.

    Speak now, and I will answer;
    How shall I help you, say;
    Ere to the winds twelve quarters
    I take my endless way.

    In this poem, he emphasizes how life is brief, and in the other, how he appreciates that we have no time to waste, and the beauty of any day quickly fades as night draws near.

    The young woman in Renoir’s painting seems not to be especially affected by her location, but the scene itself is lovely bright certainly!

    Thanks for bringing Houseman’s poem to our attention….John H.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, John. I am looking forward to reading more from this poet. “From Far, From Eve and Morning” sounds like one I will like, too. 🙂


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