Poem-a-Day - "Mistletoe" by Walter de la Mare

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December 25, 2021 

Mistletoe

Walter de la Mare

Sitting under the mistletoe
(Pale-green, fairy mistletoe),
One last candle burning low,
All the sleepy dancers gone,
Just one candle burning on,
Shadows lurking everywhere:
Some one came, and kissed me there.

Tired I was; my head would go
Nodding under the mistletoe
(Pale-green, fairy mistletoe),
No footsteps came, no voice, but only,
Just as I sat there, sleepy, lonely,
Stooped in the still and shadowy air
Lips unseen—and kissed me there.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on December 25, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets.)

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“Mistletoe” appeared in Down-Adown-Derry: A Book of Fairy Poems (Constable & Company, 1922).

Walter de la Mare was born on April 25, 1873, in London. He is the author of numerous books, including The Listeners (Constable & Company, 1912) and The Veil and Other Poems (Constable & Company, 1921). He died on June 22, 1956.
Down-Adown-Derry
(Constable & Company, 1922)

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Thanks to Ilya Kaminsky, author of Deaf Republic (Graywolf Press, 2019), who curated Poem-a-Day for this month’s weekdays. Read a Q&A about Kaminsky’s curatorial approach and find out more about our guest editors for the year
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