Selected American and British Poems


Piping Down the Valleys Wild

by William Blake
Additional Information
  • Year Published: 1789
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: England
  • Source: Blake, W. (1789). Songs of Innocence London, England:
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 5.3
  • Word Count: 151


Piping down the valleys wild,
   Piping songs of pleasant glee,
On a cloud I saw a child,
   And he laughing said to me:—

“Pipe a song about a lamb:”
   So I piped with merry cheer.
“Piper, pipe that song again:”
   So I piped: he wept to hear.

“Drop thy pipe, thy happy pipe,
   Sing thy songs of happy cheer!”
So I sang the same again,
   While he wept with joy to hear.

“Piper, sit thee down and write
   In a book, that all may read—”
So he vanished from my sight;
   And I plucked a hollow reed,

And I made a rural pen,
   And I stained the water clear,
And I wrote my happy songs
   Every child may joy to hear.