One last attempt to immerse everyone in the spirit of Christmas with my final Victorian Christmas poem, taken once again from London Society Christmas edition 1868.
With each of these poems, as I’ve been reading them, the sound of traditional Christmas Carol singing has felt greatly appropriate, but has sadly been lacking, so this time I have included this link to some music to enjoy as you read.
Today’s poem is entitled ‘The Mistletoe Kiss’
The Mistletoe Kiss
A Winter Song by Clement W. Scott
Winter is weary! And winter’s drear!
Cousin Annette, do you think it’s true?
There isn’t a month in the long, long year
But sings when I’m summoned away to you!
Though yellowing leaves in the path are sad,
And mournfully echo our travelling feet;
Still something says to my heart, be glad!
For love is an evergreen-plant, my sweet!
Dull December’s a mournful theme!
Cousin Annette, do you think it so?
There’s nothing so dear as the dreary scheme
Of winter’s sorrow and winter’s snow.
Let fanciful poets indulge in grief,
And every woe in the world repeat;
But love has been at his tricks, the thief!
And stolen a heart, and regret, my sweet!
Berries on holly proclaim ‘tis cold!
Cousin Annette, I am warmer thus;
A hand and a waist if my arms enfold,
The hand and waist will be cozy, puss!
For here we can sit and defy the wind,
Though panes are rattled with blinding sleet,
And happily one of us thus may find
That winter is best for us both, my sweet!
Mistletoe grows on the oak they say!
Cousin Annette! – she is fast asleep,
But this is a dangerous game to play,
For wandering rogues may on tiptoe creep.
The mistletoe’s beckoning over her head,
My fluttering heart, you must cease to beat;
Sleep soft! While over the floor I tread –
And wake at the touch of my lips, my sweet!
Winter is bringing the travellers home!
Cousin Annette, have I cause to fear
Lest one loved better than I may come
To claim the hand that is resting here?
The falsest women are fair as you,
And lips as pretty have sworn deceit;
But on my honour I’d swear you true –
As true as the rose at your breast, my sweet!
Winter is long! Ay, winter’s long!
Cousin Annette, is it time to go?
Perchance the lover and love-sick song
May melt for ever with winter’s snow?
The dearest thoughts in the heart lie deep
Through snows of winter and rose-time heat,
But if your memory tries to sleep,
Remember the mistletoe kiss, my sweet!
Hopefully these few little poems have brought some innocent and charming Christmas feeling. I’ve enjoyed reading them (some more than others)