Horses And Men In Rain

Let us sit by a hissing steam radiator a winter's day, gray wind pattering frozen raindrops on the window,
And let us talk about milk wagon drivers and grocery delivery boys.

Let us keep our feet in wool slippers and mix hot punches--and talk about mail carriers and
messenger boys slipping along the icy sidewalks.
Let us write of olden, golden days and hunters of the
Holy Grail and men called "knights" riding horses in the rain, in the cold frozen rain for ladies they loved.

A roustabout hunched on a coal wagon goes by, icicles drip on his hat rim, sheets of ice wrapping
the hunks of coal, the caravanserai a gray blur in slant of rain.
Let us nudge the steam radiator with our wool slippers and write poems of Launcelot, the hero, and
Roland, the hero, and all the olden golden men who rode horses in the rain.

by Carl Sandburg

Other poems of SANDBURG (456)

Comments (1)

There is subtle derision in this poem, with its images of hardworking men doing great deeds in spite of rain and icy weather, both glamorous knights and ordinary men hard at work delivering, traveling, suffering in harsh elements, all contrasted with easy living in warmth and comfort. What irony in idealizing the knights of old while sitting wrapped in coziness!