‘Stars, I have seen them fall…’: this short eight-line poem by A. E. Housman (1859-1936) is untitled, so we’ve given its first line here. Although the stars seem to fall, they remain in the sky; although rain falls into the sea, the sea remains the same saltwater it has always been. Housman’s poem is about futility, and offers a less celebratory take on the stars in the night sky than the one we tend to get from much (especially Romantic) poetry.
Stars, I have seen them fall,
But when they drop and die
No star is lost at all
From all the star-sown sky.
The toil of all that be
Helps not the primal fault;
It rains into the sea,
And still the sea is salt.
For more starry poetry, we recommend Wordsworth’s fine sonnet, ‘The stars are mansions built by Nature’s hand’.
Reblogged this on Lengua y Literatura Universal.
Pingback: 10 of the Best Poems about Stars | Interesting Literature
Pingback: The Posthumous Lad: A. E. Housman’s More Poems | Interesting Literature