Home Thoughts from Abroad

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Home-Thoughts, from Abroad is a poem by Robert Browning. It was written in 1845 while Browning was on a visit to northern Italy, and was first published in his Dramatic Romances and Lyrics.[1]

Full text

OH, to be in England
Now that April 's there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brushwood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
In England—now!
And after April, when May follows,
And the whitethroat builds, and all the swallows!
Hark, where my blossom'd pear-tree in the hedge
Leans to the field and scatters on the clover
Blossoms and dewdrops—at the bent spray's edge—
That 's the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture!
And though the fields look rough with hoary dew,
All will be gay when noontide wakes anew
The buttercups, the little children's dower
—Far brighter than this gaudy melon-flower![2]

In culture

In 1995, Home Thoughts was voted 46th in a BBC poll to find the United Kingdom's favourite poems.[3]

Home thoughts from Abroad is also the title of a song by Clifford T Ward, part of his 1973 album Home Thoughts.

Home Thoughts from Abroad is also the title of a poem by John Buchan about WW1 [4]


  1. Robert Browning's "Home-Thoughts, from Abroad": "Oh to be in England:" Seminar Paper, GRIN Verlag 2008, ISBN 978-3-640-33427-8
  2. Robert Browning and Tim Cook, The Poems of Robert Browning, Wordsworth Editions Ltd 1994, ISBN 1-85326-418-0 (p.226)
  3. Griff Rhys Jones, The Nation's Favourite Poems, BBC Worldwide Ltd 1996 ISBN 978-0-563-38782-4 (p.71)
  4. http://www.scottishpoetrylibrary.org.uk/poetry/poems/home-thoughts-abroad