The Perpetuity of Song

IT was a blithesome young jongleur
Who started out to sing,
Eight hundred years ago, or more,
On a leafy morn in spring;
And he caroled sweet as any bird
That ever tried its wing.
Of love his little heart was full, —
Madonna! how he sang!
The blossoms trembled with delight,
And round about him sprang,
As forth among the banks of Loire
The minstrel’s music rang.
The boy had left a home of want
To wander up and down,
And sing for bread and nightly rest
In many an alien town,
And bear whatever lot befell, —
The alternate smile and frown.
The singer’s carolling lips are dust,
And ages long since then
Dead kings have lain beside their thrones,
Voiceless as common men,—
But Gerald’s songs are echoing still
Through every mountain glen !
James T. Fields.