OK, I'm in search of a poem that is read at the end of the movie "Out of Africa" when Denys Finch Hatten (Robert Redford) dies and Karan (Meryl Streep) reads a portion of it during his eulogy.
Something like, "On the day you won the race, we cheered you round the market place"...........................................................
Then she finishes with "A Garland Briefer than?????????????"
I know, I'm an idiot, but, who is the author and what is the title of this poem? Its driving me absolutely CRAZY!
Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated!
It's AE Housman, "On an Athlete Dying Young", and runs:
The time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the market-place;
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.
To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.
Smart lad, to slip betimes away
From fields where glory does not stay,
And early though the laurel grows
It withers quicker than the rose.
Eyes the shady night has shut
Cannot see the record cut,
And silence sounds no worse than cheers
After earth has stopped the ears:
Now you will not swell the rout
Of lads that wore their honours out,
Runners whom renown outran
And the name died before the man.
So set, before its echoes fade,
The fleet foot on the sill of shade,
And hold to the low lintel up
The still-defended challenge-cup.
And round that early-laurelled head
Will flock to gaze the strengthless dead,
And find unwithered on its curls
The garland briefer than a girl's.
Oops - quick correction before anyone else picks up on it - it's TO an athlete... not ON an athlete...
Above text ref [www.bartleby.com]
Thank you SOOOOO MUCH.
I just read the entire thing and am BAWLING my eyes out!!!!
That has been driving me nuts!
P.S. Sorry for all the errors in my attempted "recital" of the poem.
Amy, if you enjoyed this verse, it is just one from the collection called A Shropshire Lad, published in 1896. You can find it on the internet. Last year we visited Bromsgrove, just south of Birmingham, to stand beside the statue of Housman in the town where he was born.