Among the Millet

by Archibald Lampman




Once idly in his hall king Olave sat
    Pondering, and with his dagger whittled chips;
    And one draw near to him with austere lips,
Saying "To-morrow is Monday," and at that
The king said nothing, but held forth his flat                                 5
    Broad palm, and bending on his mighty hips,
    Took up and mutely laid thereon the slips
Of scattered wood, as on a hearth, and gat
From off the embers near, a burning brand.
    Kindling the pile with this, the dreaming Dane                       10
Sat silent with his eyes set and his bland
    Proud mouth, tight-woven, smiling drawn with pain,
    Watching the fierce fire flare, and wax, and wane,
Hiss and burn down upon his shrivelled hand.