Tis me who hooves the cannon bell!


Senior Member
Russian, Spanish
I have not a clear idea about the meaning of this line in the following stanza, thanks:
"`Tis me who hooves the cannon bell!
To wake the summer dead out of their drowse.
'Tis me! A mouse
Of boy gone high in belfry dins!"
("O To Be a Boy in a Belfry", Ray Bradbury).
  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I can't find a dictionary listing for it without the "be+" prefix so I think "hoove" may be a back-formation on Bradbury's part from the verb behove (BrE) / behoove (AmE)
    (tr; impersonal) archaic to be necessary or fitting for: it behoves me to arrest you
    so I read it as:
    "It is me who finds it necessary (to ring) the cannon bell." (The necessity of the cannon bell would be in the ringing of it so I assume that "ring" is implied.)
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