Robert Stanley Weir Poems

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Robert Stanley Weir
Robert Stanley Weir, FRSC, (November 15, 1856 – August 20, 1926) was a Montreal, Quebec judge and poet most famous for writing the English lyrics to O Canada, the national anthem of Canada. He was educated as a teacher and lawyer and considered one of the leading experts of the day on Quebec's municipal civil law. He was appointed a municipal court judge and a judge for the Exchequer Court of Canada. Weir published several individual poems in magazines and collections in books. His lyrics for the English version of O Canada eclipsed many others' lyrical attempts and songs to quickly become the most popular patriotic song in Canada for the past century. Robert Stanley Weir was born in Hamilton, Canada West, the son of William Park Weir and Helen Craig Smith, who had emigrated from Scotland to Canada in 1852. Weir moved to Montreal, Quebec with his family as an infant, where his father became a Surveyor of Customs in the Port of Montreal. His brother, William Alexander Weir, was born there and would later become a Cabinet Minister in the Legislative Assembly of Quebec. Weir studied at McGill Normal School, Montreal, and at the age of 19, was appointed principal of Sherbrooke Street School, one of the newest and largest Montreal public schools at the time. He continued his studies at McGill University earning his Bachelor of Civil Law in 1880 and a Doctor of Civil Law in 1897. He was called to the bar in 1881. In 1882, he married Margaret Alexander Douglas, daughter of wealthy Montreal businessman Alexander Douglas. They had two children, a son, Douglas Weir, and daughter Marjorie Douglas Weir. Margaret would become known for her role in a movement to provide children's playgrounds in Montreal. The family divided their time between Montreal and a summer home named Cedarhurst, in Cedarville, a picturesque hamlet on the east shore of Lac Memphrémagog in the Eastern Townships of Quebec.

flight of the roller-coaster
(Old Sunnyside Beach, Toronto)

Once more around should do it, the man confided ..... [read poem]
encounters with mrs. raccoon

Once I spotted her up on our roof
and brought in the news, I should have known... [read poem]
queen anne's lace
It's a kind of flower
that if you didn't know it
you'd pass by the rest of your life.... [read poem]
'twas the second day before christmas
While they last all manger accessories
marked drastically down --

wise men, three f... [read poem]
girl at the corner of dundas & elizabeth
You want it
or you don't

I'm twenty-one
I ain't
got any time
to wast... [read poem]
After the earthquake has struck
man and his puny buildings down,

without bitterness... [read poem]
At the poetry reading
in Croft House, she wrote down
her phone-number on a piece of paper,... [read poem]
four girls at the corner
Waiting for a fix
four girls at the corner,
three about eighteen,
the fourth not more... [read poem]
riding the thundering horse
To be told in print at age sixty-three
that you're not a poet
because what you write aren'... [read poem]
Daylight my darknesses.
ad non conscriptum
Not for the fame of it,
But for the shame of it,
You crossed the sea.
Knowing the nee... [read poem]
short short song
When Susi smiles I'm happy,
when Susi's sad I'm sad.
So as long as we're together
let the whole world go mad!
night on the uplands
A fire on such a warm night?
Crazy, wasn't it, but then

the mosquitoes wanted our f... [read poem]
the face of the plasterer
The face of the plasterer

as white or whiter than the mixture
he smooths on these walls.
your fellow americans
Best people
best country

the freest
most brave

never able
to spread it
very thin.
to the canadian poets, 1940
Come, my little eunuchs, my tender virgins,
it's high time you were home and in bed.
The w... [read poem]
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