Poetry Friday: “The Arrow and the Song”


Some weeks I have my Poetry Friday poems picked out early in the week, especially if I’m sharing an original poem. Other weeks, when work and life in general threaten to get the best of me, as this one has, I’m scrambling to find a poem that speaks to me. But when I saw this on a friend’s Facebook page today, I knew instantly¬†this was the right poem for this week.

“The Arrow and the Song”
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I shot an arrow into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For, so swiftly it flew, the sight
Could not follow it in its flight.

I breathed a song into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For who has sight so keen and strong,
That it can follow the flight of song?

Long, long afterward, in an oak
I found the arrow, still unbroke;
And the song, from beginning to end,
I found again in the heart of a friend.

Be sure to visit Jone MacCulloch at Check It Out for the Poetry Friday Roundup!

7 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: “The Arrow and the Song”

  1. Lovely, Catherine. It reminds me of teaching–unfortunately I’m not feeling clear-headed enough to articulate how right now. But it does! Thanks for sharing!


  2. I’ve been thinking lots about those arrows and songs as I send another class of fifth graders off to middle school, never to see most of them again, and knowing that my influence will be buried and forgotten under that of middle school and high school teachers. I cherish the times when I happen upon the whole arrow and the memorized song.


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