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Follow the Gypsy Rover's Trail

John has many years of writing experience in poetry, short fiction and text for children's books. Basically he just loves to write.

follow-the-gypsy-rovers-trail

Inspiration for This Poem

Some time ago I enjoyed reading a poem written by Rudyard Kipling about gypsies. I couldn't recall the name of it but a Google search for gypsy poems by Kipling came up with "The Gipsy (sic)Trail.

Where I have the lines "Follow the gypsy rover's trail" Kipling's poem read "Follow the Romani patteran."

Patteran

Noun

  1. Any of several coded signs left along a road or on a non-Roma house by one Rom to another. The most common ones consist of crossed sprigs (usually of different trees or shrubs) indicating, for example, a direction travelled.

Origin

From Romani patrin (“leaf”), perhaps specifically from an infected form like the Vlax Romani pateryánsa.

follow-the-gypsy-rovers-trail

Follow the Gypsy Rover’s Trail

The white hawk hovers overhead,

A moth’s drawn to a candles flame

And the roving gypsy travels the land,

Ne’er two places the same.


“Ne’er two places the same, my dear,

I’ll follow a trail that’s true,

To the other side of the world and back,

But always returning to you.”


So leave your home in the Romani camp

Away from the fog of moors,

A new dawn beckons at the end of Earth,

As a gypsy the world is yours.


The black bear goes to the stream to fish,

The frogmouth owl to her nest,

And the Romani lad to the Romani lass

At the end of his roving quest.


The lizard runs in the ruffled grass,

The deer to the wooded glen,

And the Romani lad and the Romani lass

Will be reunited again.


Will be reunited again, again!

When he returns from his trek,

Following the path of the gypsy trail

To the ends of the Earth and back.


follow-the-gypsy-rovers-trail

Follow the gypsy rover’s trail

North where the long ships sail,

And bows break through the seas of ice,

And the masts are pocked with hail.


Follow the gypsy rover’s trail

To the west where the sleepy sun sets,

Where everything’s different from all that you know

And you see things you’ll never forget.


Follow the gypsy rover’s trail

East to the Orient’s charm,

Where the sunrise highlights the sampans sails

On seas that are silent and calm.


The eagle soars high on currents of air,

The wolf to his home in the woods,

And the heart of a man to the heart of a maiden

Is a symbol of all that is good.


And the love of a man for the love of a maiden,

A Romani boy for a girl.

A new day awaits when we follow our hearts

And all the worlds wonders unfurl.


follow-the-gypsy-rovers-trail

© 2019 John Hansen

Comments

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 11, 2020:

Thank you so much, Nell. I am so glad your husband loved this too enough to want to show his brother. Yes, I remember seeing your book advertised, on Facebook I think, and noticed you used the same photo. Great minds think alike I guess haha. Cheers.

Nell Rose from England on February 11, 2020:

Awesome! And my gypsy husband loved it too. I think the words were, 'have to show me brother!' LOL! I noticed that you used the top photo, that is the cover of my book Gypsies. Small world eh? Loved it!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 09, 2020:

I am pleased that you enjoyed this poem, Denise. It isn’t stated how long he went for but it says “to the other side of the world and back” so imagine it to be more like a year or more” her patience, to wait, would be surely tested I agree. Their love would need to be very strong. I deliberately moved it to my highlighted articles because Valentines Day was approaching

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on February 09, 2020:

I love it. This is an appropriate time of year to read a poem of love too. He doesn't say how long he is going to be gone, and the places he goes makes it sound like years. Is he so sure she will wait that long? Just a thought.

Blessings,

Denise

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on August 02, 2019:

What a beautiful comment Rinita. Your words humble me, especially coming from another poet such as yourself. Having our work appreciated by others is what makes it all worthwhile. Yes, all is well..have been on a road trip and on the home stretch now.

Rinita Sen on August 02, 2019:

Even though I am a poet myself, your poetry strengthens my belief in the power of poetry, the power of life, the journey that lies before us, and the destination - love.

I hear you through this amazing Gypsy story, narrated in your intoxicating style.

Hope all is well, my friend.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 28, 2019:

Haha Li-Jen, thanks for clearing that up. Glad my poem took you on a journey.

Li-Jen Hew on July 27, 2019:

Haha thanks Jodah! Actually I meant travelling inside your poem..in my mind.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 27, 2019:

Thank you Li-Jen. Happy travels to you. I hope you write about where you have been.

Li-Jen Hew on July 26, 2019:

Hey Jodah. Thanks for taking us on a gypsy rover's trail. I am travelling as I read your poem. Nice scenery and the flow of the poem too, with the different directions like north and west.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 23, 2019:

Hi Ann, thank you so much. I am glad I was able to capture those images effectively through the rhythm of the poem. I appreciate the kind comment.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 23, 2019:

Oh thank you so much Jo. There is no better compliment then someone saying they feel “this is the best you have written.” It means I am continuing to improve as a writer, and that’s what I aim for. I am not an expert poetry critic either, but I know what I like.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 23, 2019:

Thank you Shauna. Story poems are my favourites too. I am glad the imagery shone through for you.

Ann Carr from SW England on July 23, 2019:

Great poem, John! The rhythm reflects the pace of a horse and caravan and the words take us along many different tracks and destinations - well done! I agree with Jo; one of your best indeed.

Ann

Jo Miller from Tennessee on July 23, 2019:

Even though my husband writes poetry and I'm fond of the genre, I have to admit I'm unsure of myself as a poetry critic Nevertheless, this is one of the best poems of your I've read. Enjoyed it very much.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on July 23, 2019:

John, I love when you poetry tells a story. This one evokes beauty, freedom to roam, and longing.

Your imagery is clear, peaceful, and full of life.

I love this, my friend!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 22, 2019:

Lora. I appreciate you reading this poem and also your wonderful comment. Glad you enjoyed it.

Lora Hollings on July 21, 2019:

Lovely verses that conjure vivid imagery in this rhythmical flow of words, John. I love your poem about the gypsy rover's trail and his journey to the ends of the earth. A wonderful way to end this adventure in words: "A new day awaits when we follow our hearts. And all the worlds wonders unfurl." Thanks for sharing.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 21, 2019:

Great to see you Chris, and I always value our comments my friend. I am so glad you enjoyed this poem and feel it worthy of a return. Cheers.

Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on July 21, 2019:

Well, John, I'm glad I finally got over here before this tremendous poem was much older. I enjoyed it thoroughly and will likely be back to enjoy it again.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 21, 2019:

What a lovely comment, Genna. I am glad I managed to capture “the gypsy spirit.” Thank you so much for reading and enjoying.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on July 21, 2019:

This is a superb poem, John, with beautiful flow and imagery. I love how it captures the romance and adventure of the wandering "gypsy spirit", with reflections of nature, that to certain degree, is within us all. This was a delight to read.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 18, 2019:

Thank you Pamela. I always appreciate you reading my poetry and commenting.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on July 18, 2019:

I enjoyed this poem about a gypsy following his heart to find his love. I liked the historical aspects as the words flowed beautifully. Another very good poem, John.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 17, 2019:

Sean thank you for taking the time to share the wonderful lyrics of that song Nomad. Very appropriate. Have a great day my brother.

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on July 17, 2019:

My dear brother I came back to share with you a favourite song of mine, Nomad by Iron Maiden. I think you'll understand why!

"Like a mirage riding on the desert sand

Like a vision floating with the desert winds

Know the secret of the ancient desert lands

you're the keeper of the mystery in your hands

Nomad rider of the ancient east

Nomad rider that men know the least

Nomad where you come from no one knows

Nomad where you go to no one tells

Undercover of the veil of your disguise

The men that fear you are the ones that you despise

No one's certain what your future will behold

You're a legend your own history will be told

Nomad rider of the ancient east

Nomad rider that men know the least

Nomad where you come from no one knows

Nomad where you go to no one tells

No one dares to even look or glance your way

Your reputation goes before you they all say

Like a spirit that can disappear at will

Many claim of things but no one's seen you kill

Nomad, you're the rider so mysterious

Nomad, you're the spirit that men fear in us

Nomad, you're the rider of the desert sands

No man's ever understood your genius

Those who see you in horizon desert sun

Those who fear your reputation hide or run

You send before you a mystique that's all your own

Your silhouette is like a statue carved in stone

Nomad, you're the rider so mysterious

Nomad, you're the spirit that men fear in us

Nomad, you're the rider of the desert sands

No man's ever understood your genius

Legend has it that you speak an ancient tongue

But no one's spoke to you and lived to tell the tale

Some they say that you have killed a hundred man

Others say that you have died and live again

Nomad, you're the rider so mysterious

Nomad, you're the spirit that men fear in us

Nomad, you're the rider of the desert sands

No man's ever understood your genius"

Peace always!

Sean

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Thank you John.

John Ward on July 16, 2019:

Very good.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Hi Ruby. Thank you for the lovely comment. You are the second person who said this reads like a song. Let me know if you remember the name of the one it reminds you of.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Hello brother Sean. It is always a pleasure to receive a comment from you. I like to have variety in what I write and cover as many subjects and different atmospheres as possible. Glad you enjoyed this. Blessings.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

I am glad you enjoyed this poem, Chitrangada. Thanks for the kind comment.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Hi Liz, thanks for reading. I am glad I managed to capture the appropriate atmosphere in this poem.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on July 16, 2019:

This is another piece of beautiful poetry. It reminds me of a song and I can't remember the title. Loved this John.

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on July 16, 2019:

You always have something new to pleasantly surprise us, my dear brother, John! Amazing atmosphere! Thank you for the journey!

Blessings from a gypsy Heart!

Sean

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on July 16, 2019:

Wonderful poem and beautiful imagery. Loved going through.

The pictures are so lively. Thanks for sharing.

Liz Westwood from UK on July 16, 2019:

This is a very atmospheric poem. The style is fitting for a romany tale.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Eric, I am glad this brought back memories of your days in Europe in the 70s. Life is made for living.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on July 16, 2019:

I took off to Europe in about 1973. My mom made clear to follow the gypsy way. At this time it meant those of experience in the hostels I stayed in. And then off I was to where they said to go where beer flowed and pot was smoked and girls were friendly.

Nothing better than a sleeping bag next to a lake south of the Alps. Perhaps I will go back and work on a farm again. Thanks for reminding me with your always wonderful gift of love of life.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Thank you Bill, glad you enjoyed the meal of poetry and history.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

I reread the poem after you said you started singing it Mary. I agree it probably could be a song. Thank you or that thought. Glad you enjoyed and it reminded you of The Caravan.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Hi Nithya, thank you. Glad you enjoyed the poem.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 16, 2019:

Thank you for reading Flourish. I appreciate your comment.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on July 16, 2019:

The history lesson was a bonus, a fine dessert served after the main course of delicious poetry!

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on July 16, 2019:

As I read your poem, I started singing it. It lends to singing and I wish I have that gift but sadly I don't. Enjoyed it.Made me think of James Michener's book, The Caravan.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on July 16, 2019:

Great poem, you have brought out the scenic beauty of the trail so beautifully in your poem.

FlourishAnyway from USA on July 16, 2019:

This flowed well and there was a certain lightness and whimsy to it. Well done.