The Valley of Dreadful Night

The Valley of Dreadful Night

A Poem by David Lewis Paget

He hid in the fields and hedgerows,

And skirted the towns by night,

He lay in the barns of deserted farms

To sleep, when the time was right.

He always kept one step ahead

Of the pack that would hunt him down,

And stole his food in the neighbourhood

Of the cottages, far from town!

 

He thought of his love, his Jenny,

And gave out a savage cry,

He’d found her lying with Jack Malone

Like a pig, in a rutting sty,

He’d plunged the dagger into the heart

Of his love, and his one delight,

Then watched the fire leach out of her eyes

To the Valley of Dreadful Night!

 

Malone, he’d left as a warning,

His throat slit ear to ear,

No more was the great philanderer

To bed any woman here,

He propped him up at the old crossroads,

He nailed his corpse to a tree,

And left a sign: ‘I was caught in crime,

Now look what’s happened to me!’

 

His nights, they were black and broken

By dreams that troubled his sleep,

For Jenny would seem to be woken

From the depths of a bottomless creek,

She raged in his shallow nightmares,

What she said would leave him agape:

‘I never loved any man but you,

It was simply a case of rape!'

 

Then he moaned and cried in confusion,

And he wept ‘til he lay awake,

With his tear-stained face now broken,

With the loss of his heartfelt hate,

And he mourned the loss of his Jenny,

The girl with the wide, bright eyes,

And he cursed himself for a felon,

And the life that he now despised!

 

They found him there in the morning,

They beat, and bound him in chain,

Then dragged him off to the magistrates

As he sank in his pit of pain.

The judge put on the dread black cap

And thundered the words that he said:

‘I have no choice but to sentence you

To be hanged by the neck, ‘til dead!’

 

The sun, it was barely rising,

He could hear the birds from his cell,

Fluttering up in the willow tree

By the gallows, his personal hell,

They looped the rope down over his neck

And he said: 'It’s only right!’

As he crashed down into a dreamless sleep

In the Valley of Dreadful Night!

 

David Lewis Paget


© 2012 David Lewis Paget



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No wonder you are brilliant found this on the internet You are a published poet.
poet David Lewis Paget

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Biography of David Lewis Paget
David Lewis Paget poet

AUSTRALIAN POET. Born in Nottingham, lived in Great Barr, Birmingham, until the age of 13, when migrated to Australia. Lived in Adelaide, joined Air Force at 21 and became Instrument Fitter. Began writing poetry during duty crew and guard weekends. In 1976 fulltime to Flinders University of South Australia, Bachelors degree in English and History. Wrote and published a magazine for the unemployed called 'Bread'. Wrote and published monthly magazines 'Trader's Gate' and 'Central Yorke Peninsula Mercury' for three years in the late 1980's. Ran printing and publishing business Mushroom Graphics until 1990, then Cottage Print until 2005. Gave up poetry for five years, and wrote eight novels in the early 2000's.
Until recently was Teaching English at Wenzhou Medical College, an arm of the Wenzhou University, Zhejiang Province, People's Republic of China. The experience there prompted another foray into poetry, leading to the current narrative style chosen for the second incarnation. Now retired and living in South Australia. Author of the non-fiction 'Arrows from Wenzhou', a detailed account of the twelve months spent in China.
Concentrates these days on narrative poetry.

David Lewis Paget's Published Books:

Poetry Collections -
Stand Up & Be Counted - 1974
The Venus Bird - 1974
Terra Australis Incognita - 1975
Ishtar - 1977
Bitter Harvest - 1977
Weep - 1980
Inspirators - 1981
Spoils of War - 1984
Cader Rook - 1996
Perspectives in a Black Season - 2003
The Red Knight - 2003
.


Posted 5 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

A vivid haunting story poem about the tragedy that can come from being blinded by any of our baser/negative emotions. The lesson can be applied to any emotion that colors our perceptions in a way that prevents us from seeing the truth. A truly powerful piece with a broad reach...

Posted 4 Years Ago


Who here has not made an irreversible mistake, then admitted of relief when the toll was collected? As with so much of your extraordinary verse, Dave, the black impulses of the human heart, and the inevitability of consequences stand pointedly forth here. The core massage is "Get the facts first, don't act on your suppositions!"

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

You are the master! lol... another fantastic piece. The stories behind your poetry are so very gripping! Thanks for sharing!

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

No wonder you are brilliant found this on the internet You are a published poet.
poet David Lewis Paget

Poet's Page
Biography
Poems
Quotations
Comments
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Message to the poet

Share on Facebook
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Biography of David Lewis Paget
David Lewis Paget poet

AUSTRALIAN POET. Born in Nottingham, lived in Great Barr, Birmingham, until the age of 13, when migrated to Australia. Lived in Adelaide, joined Air Force at 21 and became Instrument Fitter. Began writing poetry during duty crew and guard weekends. In 1976 fulltime to Flinders University of South Australia, Bachelors degree in English and History. Wrote and published a magazine for the unemployed called 'Bread'. Wrote and published monthly magazines 'Trader's Gate' and 'Central Yorke Peninsula Mercury' for three years in the late 1980's. Ran printing and publishing business Mushroom Graphics until 1990, then Cottage Print until 2005. Gave up poetry for five years, and wrote eight novels in the early 2000's.
Until recently was Teaching English at Wenzhou Medical College, an arm of the Wenzhou University, Zhejiang Province, People's Republic of China. The experience there prompted another foray into poetry, leading to the current narrative style chosen for the second incarnation. Now retired and living in South Australia. Author of the non-fiction 'Arrows from Wenzhou', a detailed account of the twelve months spent in China.
Concentrates these days on narrative poetry.

David Lewis Paget's Published Books:

Poetry Collections -
Stand Up & Be Counted - 1974
The Venus Bird - 1974
Terra Australis Incognita - 1975
Ishtar - 1977
Bitter Harvest - 1977
Weep - 1980
Inspirators - 1981
Spoils of War - 1984
Cader Rook - 1996
Perspectives in a Black Season - 2003
The Red Knight - 2003
.


Posted 5 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

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Outstanding again sir!!!!

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

great use of imagery a well penned piece, thanks for sharing!

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

This is a brilliant work of poetical act. The ryhme was perfect it managed to portray this sorry tale without sounding forced on unnesscary. THank you so much for writing such a lovely piece of writing.. love it

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Normally I wouldn't add a review this late in the game but I must say, Holy Smokes!

That ran chills down my arms and legs. That has NEVER happened before, ever.

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

I love the way you write, it's almost a mix between old fashioned and modern, has an incredible flow, and immense depth. A tragic romance!
I love your repeated use of "Valley of Dreadful Night," and the rhyme scheme is so flawless it does nothing to draw the readers attention from the story.

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Hmmm, an old fashion feel to this separates this from most things i read on here. The details you used in describing the guilt of the man made it sound as if he were going insane with the shame of it, especially after learning that it was a rape instead of infidelity. And in the end, they both wound up in the same place. A tragic romance. I like the story, to my knowledge it is quite original and your diction made it look much older than it really is. This could be classified as southern gothic, and that adds more to my liking. Overall, excellent write, and it has earned my rarely given 100% rating.

Posted 5 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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1451 Views
41 Reviews
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Shelved in 5 Libraries
Added on April 16, 2012
Last Updated on June 26, 2012
Tags: Dagger, hedgerows, barns, judge

Author

David Lewis Paget
David Lewis Paget

Moonta, South Australia, Australia



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