First World War Poetry Digital Archive

Star-Talk

'Are you awake, Gemelli, This frosty night?' 'We'll be awake till reveillé, Which is Sunrise,' say the Gemelli, 'It's no good trying to go to sleep: If there's wine to be got we'll drink it deep, But sleep is gone for to-night, But sleep is gone for to-night.' 'Are you cold too, poor Pleiads, This frosty night?' 'Yes, and so are the Hyads: See us cuddle and hug,' say the Pleiads, 'All six in a ring: it keeps us warm: We huddle together like birds in a storm: It's bitter weather to-night, It's bitter weather to-night.' 'What do you hunt, Orion, This starry night?' 'The Ram, the Bull and the Lion, And the Great Bear,' says Orion, 'With my starry quiver and beautiful belt I am trying to find a good thick pelt To warm my shoulders to-night, To warm my shoulders to-night.' 'Did you hear that, Great She-bear, This frosty night?' 'Yes, he's talking of stripping me bare Of my own big fur,' says the She-bear, 'I'm afraid of the man and his terrible arrow: The thought of it chills my bones to the marrow, And the frost so cruel to-night! And the frost so cruel to-night!'

'How is your trade, Aquarius, This frosty night?' 'Complaints is many and various And my feet are cold,' says Aquarius, 'There's Venus objects to Dolphin-scales, And Mars to Crab-spawn found in my pails, And the pump has frozen to-night, And the pump has frozen to-night.'

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