Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Sumer is icumen in

Life may well have been short, nasty and brutish in the thirteenth century, but they appreciated spring as much as we do.  I love this thirteenth century poem and [perhaps rather sadly] can't stop reciting it in my head at this time of year:

Sing! cuccu, nu.  Sing! cuccu.
Sing! cuccu. Sing! cuccu, nu.

Sumer is icumen in -
Lhude sing! cuccu.
Groweth sed and bloweth med
And springth the wude nu -
Sing! cuccu.

Awe bleteth after lomb,
Lhouth after calve cu,
Bulluc sterteth, bucke verteth,
Murie sing! cuccu.
Cuccu, cuccu,
Well singes thu, cuccu -
Ne swik thu naver nu!

[Sing! now, cuckoo. Spring has come in - sing loud! cuckoo.  The seed grows and the meadow flowers, and now the wood is in leaf.  Sing!  Cuckoo.  The ewe bleats for her lamb, the cow lows for her calf, the bullock leaps and the buck farts.  Sing, tunefully! Cuckoo, cuckoo, you sing well - now don't ever stop!]

The only problem is I've yet to hear a cuckoo this year, nor for that matter a deer break wind.

1 comment:

  1. Looks idyllic, and the lack of deer farts can be considered a bonus.