The Way through The Woods

English Poems Index

The Way through The Woods :

They shut the road through the woods

Seventy years ago,

Weather and rain have undone it again,

And now you would never know,

There was once a road through the woods

Before they planted the trees.

It is underneath the coppice and heath,

And the thin anemones.

Only the keeper sees

That, where the ring-dove broods,

And the badgers roll at ease,

There was once a road through the wood.

Yet, if you enter the woods

Of a summer evening late,

When the night-air cools on the

trout-ringed pools

Where the otter whistles his mate,

(They fear not men in the woods,

Because they see so few.)

You will hear the beat of a horse's feet,

And the swish of a skirt in the dew,

Steadily cantering through

The misty solitudes,

As though they perfectly knew

The old lost road through the woods...

But there is no road through the woods!

By Rudyard Kipling

About The Author :

Rudyard Kipling was born in Mumbai in 1865. At the age of six he was sent to England to school. Later, he returned to India and worked as a reporter. Kipling travelled widely and worked in many parts of the world. His books Kim, The Jungle Book and Just-so Stories for Little Children are well known throughout the world. He also wrote a number of volumes of poetry. In 1907 Kipling received the Nobel Prize for Literature. He died in 1936.

The themes of many of Kipling's stories and poems are children, Indian life and animals.

Words to Know :

Anemones : kinds of plants

Canter : easy gallop (of horse)

Coppice : small wood of undergrowth and small trees, copse

Heath : bare flat piece of land, covered with shrubs

Keeper : the game-keeper or watchman who sees that no outsiders come into the woods to shoot the animals

English Poems Index

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