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Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Chanctonbury Ring - a few lines.

"I can't forget the lane that goes from Steyning to the Ring
In summer time, and on the Down how larks and linnets sing
High in the sun. The wind comes off the sea, and Oh the air!
I never knew till now that life in old days was so fair.
But now I know it in this filthy rat infested ditch
When every shell may spare or kill - and God alone knows which.
And I am made a beast of prey, and this trench is my lair.
My God! I never knew till now that those days were so fair.
So we assault in half an hour, and, - it's a silly thing -
I can't forget the narrow l
ane to Chanctonbury Ring."

John Stanley Purvis, 1916

How oft around thy Ring, sweet Hill,
  A Boy, I used to play,
And form my plans to plant thy top
  On some auspicious day.
How oft among thy broken turf
  With what delight I trod,

With what delight I placed those twigs
  Beneath thy maiden sod.
And then an almost hopeless wish
  Would creep within my breast,
Oh! could I live to see thy top
  In all its beauty dress'd.
That time's arrived; I've had my wish,
  And lived to eighty-five;
I'll thank my God who gave such grace
  As long as e'er I live.
Still when the morning Sun in Spring,
  Whilst I enjoy my sight,
Shall gild thy new-clothed Beech and sides,
  I'll view thee with delight.


Charles Goring, 1828


East and west in drifting cloud
Fades the line of the South Downs
Here are no 'buses braying loud,
No crowds or smoke or din of towns
But only sunlit greens and browns
And the far flick of a hawk's wing;
A vast content his climbing crowns
Who stands by Chanctonbury Ring'

Unknown, earlier than 1928





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