To This Great Stage of Fools: A Celebration of Longfellow

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was born in Portland, Maine, February 27, 1807. He’s rather unfashionable nowadays, but I introduced a high school class of homeschoolers to Longfellow a couple of years ago, and one of the guys in the class, a sixteen year old “cool dude”, fell for Longfellow and on his own memorized the poem, Psalm of Life. Never underestimate the power of poetry.

Links to a few Longfellow classics:

It Is Not Always May:
“Maiden, that read’st this simple rhyme,
Enjoy thy youth, it will not stay ;
Enjoy the fragrance of thy prime,
For O ! it is not always May !”

A Psalm of Life:
“Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.”

Paul Revere’s Ride:
“In the hour of darkness and peril and need,
The people will waken and listen to hear
The hurrying hoof-beats of that steed,
And the midnight message of Paul Revere.”

Evangeline, A Tale of Arcadie:
“Fair was she to behold, that maiden of seventeen summers.
Black were her eyes as the berry that grows on the thorn by the way-side,
Black, yet how softly they gleamed beneath the brown shade of her tresses!”

Travels by the Fireside:
“Let others traverse sea and land,
And toil through various climes,
I turn the world round with my hand
Reading these poets’ rhymes.”

More Longfellow from Journey Woman.

Tricia (The Miss Rumphius Effect) quotes from Longfellow’s The Fire of Drift-wood.

The Headmistress of The Common Room features Snowflakes.

Anyone else celebrating Longfellow today or in past posts? Leave a comment.

3 thoughts on “To This Great Stage of Fools: A Celebration of Longfellow

  1. I enjoy Longfellow, and have never understood why he is considered outdated. “Psalm of Life” and “The Rainy Day” are two of my favorites.

  2. Pingback: Semicolon » Poetry Friday: The Childrens Hour by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

  3. Pingback: NPM: Poetry from the Desk Drawer | Semicolon NPM: Poetry from the Desk Drawer | Books we must have though we lack bread.

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