1897

21. A day on Lake Huron shore | 22. Written for the week of prayer
23. Bruce Council for 1897 | 24. On the death of Nathan Hart
25. Underwood tea meeting | 26. The youth’s lament at leaving Underwood
27. The shamrock | 28. Spring | 29. Summer | 30. Autumn
31. The dandelion | 32. Labour and rest | 33. Fishing for suckers
34. Jubilee song | 35. A fall wheat field | 36. Double rainbow
37. The fencing of the farm | 38. Annual women’s meeting
39. On finding a bed of violets in October
40. Thoughts on Thanksgiving | 41. Thanksgiving Day

21. A DAY ON LAKE HURON SHORE – Antrim Farm, By Bai-de-dore Bay – January 1897

I looked on Lake Huron in the first glint of morning
As the orb of the day threw his light o’er the hill
The woods on the shore with rich beauty adorning
All mirrored in water so peaceful and still…
How hard just to tell where its waters are sleeping
In its own mighty bed ‘neath the arch of the sky
How close with each other is the company they’re keeping
So close that I cannot just tell with my eye…
For Huron’s blue waters they seem so to mingle
With the blue of the sky in one grand mighty arch
One would think they could never divide and be single
We’ll see it more clearly now the sun’s on his march…
Yes, upward and upward the sun is now mounting
While out on Lake Huron his light he does pour
The stars are gone out, I must now quit my counting
And I see things more plain ‘long the rough broken shore…
On the beautiful bay how its waters are dancing
‘Neath the light from the sun and the breeze from the west
And wave after wave up the shore is advancing
Lake Huron is waking once more from its rest…
And while I am watching the breeze has grown stronger
And white-crested waves leap up high on the shore
I watch their blue waters in rapture and wonder
How angry they seem, and how loud is their roar…
Far out on the water the sea gulls are playing
And washing their feathers so snowy and white
While I so enchanted am leisurely straying
Without ever thinking how near it’s to-night…
The day nearly gone and the sun tho’ still shining
Seems wanting to sink into Lake Huron’s breast
So I bid him good-night without any repining
For an honest day’s work should bring a night’s rest.

22. WRITTEN FOR THE WEEK OF PRAYER – Antrim Farm – January 3,1897

O God of this great universe
From first to last the same
Now help us through this week of prayer
To honour Thy Great Name…
The world in trouble still is steeped
Through sin and shame and woe
But through these clouds some light has peeped
To light the way we go…
Through all the different climes of earth
Thy name should praised be
From East to West, and North to South
All men should bow the knee…
We ask Thee for Thy spirit Lord
O do us not deny
But do us needed grace afford
As on Thee we rely…
Remember all Thy sons of men
Whate’er their color be
For all do need that cleansing blood
That flowed from Calvary…
And as the sunshine round the earth
Imparting light and heat
So shine into our sinful hearts
We humbly Thee entreat…
Accept the prayers that may ascend
From every faithful heart
And do Thou deign Thine ear to lend
And still Thy grace impart…
So that the sons of men may see
The beauty of Thy Word
So all to Thee shall bend the knee
And own Thee as Their Lord.

23. BRUCE COUNCIL FOR 1897 – Antrim Farm – January 4, 1897

I am asked to sing the praises
Of the Champions once again
And look at some new phases
Of these most wondrous men…
It’s not to praise their blood and bone
It’s not to praise their strength
It’s not to praise what good they’ve done
Nor tell of their great length…
It’s not for Wisdom’s words that fell
In choicest language dressed
It’ not for loving hearts that dwell
Within their spacious breasts…
It’s not for deeds of valor done
Which Britons love to see
It’s not that some grand truth was won
Through their instrumentality…
It’s not their work for Temperance
In this township where they dwell
Nor help this good cause to advance
And make whiskey hard to sell…
It’s not that fear or favor
Has lost it’s charm for them
Nor is it their endeavor
To be worthy council men…
But it is for their economy
I am asked to give a shout
And how they save for you and me
I now must tell it out…
Now if you want a ditch cleaned out
They’ll tell you with a sneer
It’s something they don’t know about
You must send for the engineer…
And if their dogs do worry sheep
And quite a number slay
They’ll wipe their mouths, deny the truth
And let our township pay…
All other’s wages they cut down
And do it in a trice
But OH! so hard to cut their own
It’s never thought of twice…
Economy! Oh Economy!
I’ll shout it o’er and o’er
It’s just such quack economy
That made old Ireland poor.

24. ON THE DEATH OF OUR BROTHER-IN-LAW, NATHAN HART – Antrim Farm – January 31,1897
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning (Psalm 30:5)

Now is your night of weeping
Now is your sorrow deep
When others sweet are sleeping
You tearful vigil keep…
You miss his welcome coming
You miss his cheerful smile
You miss his old song-humming
That did your cares beguile…
His voice was always cheery
When he came home again
Now days and nights are dreary
And filled with grief and pain…
Your circle now is broken
There is his vacant chair
You miss his kind words spoken
That showed his loving care…
Your cares seemed like a feather
When you sat, and laughed and talked
Or when down the street together
You sauntered for a walk…
Your long bright day is ended
Your sun sunk out of sight
And sunshine now is blended
With weary lonesome night…
But like a wondrous morning
After a night of rain
Comes the sun, with light adorning
The valley, hills, and plain…
So on our raptured vision
Shall scenes of light arise
And find, there’s no division
From loved ones in the skies…
Our hearts may break with sorrow
When troubles rise and swell
Just wait for God’s to-morrow
For “He doeth all things well”.

25. UNDERWOOD TEA MEETING – Antrim Farm – February 9th, 1897

Whene’er you want a real good tea
And have the best of company
And still don’t want to get it free
Be sure you come to Underwood…
For you will there find all you need
Suppose you just go for a feed
To satisfy your greatest greed
Don’t pass us by at Underwood…
I tell you what! On Thursday last
The ladies spread a grand repast
For all who would their quarters cast
To help the church at Underwood…
The evening was so bright and fair
With proper-tempered winter air
There was no moon, but starts were there
And gave good light at Underwood…
Up to the hall the people went
To get there quick was their intent
You would have thought they had been sent
On Thursday night at Underwood…
And when they finished at the hall
Each one was wishing for a wall
To lean against for fear they’d fall
They were so filled at Underwood…
Out in street the young man’s arm
Just kept his lady from all harm
In fact, it acted like a charm
On slippery roads at Underwood…
And when the church was reached at last
Their outer garment they offcast
As their hard work was now all past
They just sat still at Underwood…
Upon the pulpit platform there
Were gathered men both gray and fair
Who did their rich experience share
With us, that night at Underwood…
In manly loyal words they’d tell
Their love for home and country well
That made our hearts with pride to swell
There in the church at Underwood…
With some “scotch” jokes they did beguile
Their hearers into laugh and smile
I longed for one from my “green” isle
‘Twould have taken well at Underwood…
And now ’twas getting late for some
The chairman thought he’d let’s go home
Some took the road that they had come
To suit themselves at Underwood…
But others thought it would be well
To just go home by (I’ll not tell)
It’s only where some friend doth dwell
Who had been at Underwood…
Now if you should ever come here
You’ll get the very best of cheer
And nothing said to make you drear
I’m sure of that at Underwood.

26. THE YOUTH’S LAMENT AT LEAVING UNDERWOOD – Antrim Farm – April, 1897

O dear! my heart is nearly broken
When a last good-bye I now have spoken
We’ll just receive this as a token
Of love for thee — dear Underwood…
My boyhood’s days were spent near thee
From every care and sorrow free
A fairer place I’ll never see
Than thee, — dear dirty Underwood…
I’ll miss the corners of thy streets
Where I with others oft did meet
In boisterous way each other greet
Around the streets of Underwood…
Thy streets were always crowded too
With posts, and wood, and logs in view
In fact, you hardly could drive through
Some of the streets of Underwood…
And cedar timbers piled along
The sidewalks where people throng
I wonder if it could belong
To anyone at Underwood…
Maybe its put there by intent
To save the council paying rent
For on economy they’re bent
Remember that at Underwood…
Now Robbie Burns sang of old Ayr
For honest men and girls so fair
You’ll find a lot of both to spare
Whene’er you go to Underwood…
For precious goods piled up quite high
Around each business place do lie
How pleasing to an honest eye
These goods are safe at Underwood…
The girls did always with a smile
My youthful eye and heart beguile
For free and easy was the style
Of girls I knew at Underwood…
But now I am off to the West
No more with them I’ll laugh and jest
I guess I’ll always like them best
The girls I knew at Underwood…
New faces I will see galore
Not many I have seen before
At thought of it, my heart’s quite sore
Away from thee, — old Underwood…
And different scenes I now must view
As past on rushing cars we flew
But things will always seem quite new
From what I saw at Underwood…
And now Superior I can see
That mighty lake so like the sea
How cold the wind can blow off thee
Yes — colder than at Underwood…
And many a rock, and many a glen
Doth shelter tents of the Red Men
How very slow they are to learn
To live like folk at Underwood…
Some passengers now leave the train
They hustled round with might and main
“Now don’t stay long, but come again”
Shouts out a voice from Underwood…
The boundless prairie I behold
Whose wheat when cut, and threshed, and sold
Will fill the farmer’s purse with gold
Not much of that at Underwood…
When show-time comes; what shall I do?
I’ll sit and drowse, and think of you
While in my dreams, I’ll get a view
Of crowded bustling Underwood…
Tea meeting time I’m sure to miss
I’ll just console myself with this
Some other guy will have the bliss
Of being there at Underwood.

27. THE SHAMROCK – Antrim Farm – March 17th, 1897

Though far from the land where the shamrock is blooming
By hedges, in meadows, on moor, or in dell
The scenes of the past in my memory is looming
Thou Land of my Fathers, I love thee right well…
We read of the time when St.Patrick the holy
Kept the Cross and the Shamrock both pinned on his breast
He fought not for fame, but lived with the lowly
And they buried them too, when they laid him to rest…
How the wild Irish listened as he shewed from this flower
That “The Father” and “Son” and “Holy Spirit” three
Though each was distinct, all had equal power
And was only one “God” in the blest Trinity…
We read of the time when the green Isle of Erin
Shone like the beacon far out o’er the sea
When out from her shores the glad life truth was bearing
That told of Salvation so full and so free…
Then had thy bold sons in their strength stood united
No Saxon could e’er have set foot on thy soil
But by their divisions were oft times invited
And gave little help, but got most of the spoil…
Ah! sons of old Erin still brave and undaunted
The Saxon may elbow you out of your right
But they’ll miss you in charges where bayonets are wanted
And the foes of Britannia are strong in the fight…
Oh where shall the Shamrock and sweet orange lily
The sweetest and brightest, — each other entwine
And cease those divisions so useless and silly
That have kept them apart for so long a time?…
Then “Hurrah for the isle”, that bright spot in creation
Where like doves to their windows, her sons often flock
And nowhere on earth, no matter what nation
Has an emblem so sweet as our little Shamrock.

28. SPRING-Antrim Farm – April 30th, 1897

Each year has noble children four
They all are maidens fair
And one is tripping past our door
Possessed of beauty rare…
Where’er her dainty feet doth go
She leaves their marks in green
And touches all the flowers that blow
And decks them like a queen…
And all the little brooks and rills
Shout out her praises free
And bubbling bright among the hills
Dance toward the distant sea…
You ask her name — why don’t you know?
Go ask each bird on wing
And whether flying high or low
They shout out “This is Spring”.

29. SUMMER – The Year’s Second Daughter – Antrim Farm – July 15, 1897

The second daughter of the year
Comes with a royal train
Her presence in the woods I hear
Or see in waving grain…
Where’er she passes through the land
Her breath is warm and sweet
You still can see her sun-burned hand
And lovely brown her cheek
Her foot doth dry the muddy pool
Where school boys loved to play
And in the quiet woods so cool
All day she loves to stay…
And when her breath gets very warm
You oft can hear her drummer
Go rattle off like an alarm
A thunder-storm in Summer.

30. AUTUMN – The Year’s Third Daughter – Antrim Farm – September 13, 1897

Her sister, spring, made birdies sing
And fields so bright and gay
And summer’s heat did grow the wheat
Through all the long bright day…
But autumn weaves a crown of sheaves
Around her stately head
Her pathway strewn with fruit that’s grown
Where once her sisters tread…
And autumn’s seed shall nations feed
Whatever be their state
For harvest’s sure, while Time endures
For those who work and wait…
Trees that are green will soon be seen
To change for richer shade
And flowers that bloom will very soon
On Mother Earth be laid.

31. THE DANDELION – Antrim Farm – May 25, 1897

The sugar maple leaf may still
Canadian’s emblem be
And proudly float o’er plain and hill
That sign we love to see…
Yet o’er our own broad pastures green
Is seen a yellow flower
That’s fit to deck the fairest queen
Or grow around her bower…
No sooner is cold winter gone
And grass begins to grow
Up comes our Dandelion
Its yellow head to show…
In pastures and on road-sides too
No other flower can show
Such growing, all the Spring months through
And still successive blow…
And when the morning sun doth rise
And flood the earth with light
Its face opes to the eastern skies
Then follows the sun till night…
And when the sun has sunk from sight
Its yellow flower it folds
Up good and tight, all thro’ the night
To keep it from the cold…
While poets sing of roses fair
And praise some flower that’s duller
Wells Richardson my taste does share
With Dandelion butter color

32. LABOUR AND REST- Antrim Farm – July 1897

From humble homes the cry is heard
If only I could rest
From this fierce struggle for my bread
I’d think myself so blest…
For every morning’s sun doth call
Fresh labour to be done
Nor idly stand, there’s work for all
From morn till setting sun…
With aching arms and throbbing brow
The ditcher digs his drain
Till sun in West is sinking low
He works with might and main…
The day’s work done, with weary feet
He trudges on his way
To reach the place where he may sleeps
And rest till break of day…
And in his dreams all work’s forgot
And some would count them blest
Could they but sleeps on downy cot
And get such restful rest…
But rest can only come from toil
That’s well and nobly done
Sure Labour is the grandest oil
It’s best for every one…
There’s plenty work needs to be done
In hut or stately hall
There’s useful work for every one
Our Saviour worked for all…
Then let us work while life is ours
Our strength we’ll still employ
For life is just made up of hours
Work gives each hour it’s joy…
And let that work be something good
To make the world more blest
And do our duty as we should
Then follows restful rest.

33. FISHING FOR SUCKERS – Antrim Farm – May 1897

The creek that runs down by our door
Is not without its charm
Though oft in spring with rage and roar
It does a lot of harm…
When mornings sun with golden beam
Illumes the eastern sky
The duck with quack and flapping wings
Makes for that stream nearby…
We watch its waters in the sun
And listen to its noise
It just appears to run for fun
To please the girls and boys…
It used to be a favorite place
When the flats were filled with logs
For the various breeds of a singing race
But most enjoyed by frogs…
But now no logs are lying round
And the frogs are not so bright
But a business new has now been found
In catching suckers at night…
And along each bank of the lovely stream
When night spreads out its pall
A row of stable lamps are seen
And splashing footsteps fall

34. JUBILEE SONG – Antrim Farm – June 22, 1897
Rule Britannia o’er the waves
Her sons shall never be made slaves
They’d rather go to watery graves
For sake of Britain’s Queen…
While Britons still together stand
No foreign foe shall rule our land
Nor leave their tracks upon our sand
Long life our noble Queen…
From John O. Groats to Isle of Wight
Her sons would rise in awful might
And put their enemies to flight
For sake of home and Queen…
Our Canada would lead the van
Her sons would never flee, but stand
And fight for home and motherland
And shout “God Save the Queen”…
Australians, like their kangaroo
Are ready both to dare and do
And fight for all that’s good and true
And sing “Long live the Queen”…
From every clime beneath the sun
Comes the great shout, “we all are one”
And duty we will never shun
Though far from home and Queen.

35. A FALL WHEAT FIELD – Antrim Farm – Underwood, July 26th, 1897

To Noah was the promise given
While earth would last, seed-time should be
And harvest, by the law of heaven
Comes after seed-time, as we see…
The seed was sown in faith and hope
And months have passed since that was done
Nor does the sower have to mope
O’er seed that’s lost, he’s bushels won…
How small and tender was the blade
When up through mother earth it came
It grew in sunshine and in shade
And soon the field was green again…
Cold winter’s blast that swept the plain
And left the field so bleak and bare
For months King winter time did reign
The wheat ‘neath snow was buried there…
Then spring came in with sun and rain
That made the wheat begin to grow
The fields became all green again
Where deep they’d lain beneath the snow…
Then day by day the summer through
‘Mid sun and shade, and light and heat
And rain and mist and pearly dew
All helped to grow the field of wheat…
No finer sight was ever seen
Than waving fields of golden grain
True to His promise God has been
And earth has harvest once again.

36. DOUBLE RAINBOW (Bringing to mind-Gen 9:12 to 18) – Antrim Farm – August 16th, 1897

Now man can paint a landscape fair
Or picture sunset’s evening glow
Or he may draw a flower that’s rare
No man can paint God’s lovely bow…
The works of man may look like life
And all the painter’s skill may show
Some scenes of peace, and some of strife
It’s far behind God’s promised bow…
‘Tis only Nature that can paint
Or make its colors come and go
Sometimes so plain, and then so faint
The seven colors of God’s rainbow…
‘Twas given to man a promise sure
That water never more would flow
O’er hill and plain while skies endure
God sealed it by His lovely bow…
Though man might fear when rains descend And sun for days refuse to show
That once again all life would end
By deluge, No! where’s the bow…
The clouds by mighty winds are riven
The sun now shines in evening glow
Now look and see the eastern sky
There once again God placed His bow.

37. THE FENCING OF THE FARM – Antrim Farm – Aug 1897

Of all the things that’s needful
Upon a well kept farm
A first class fence is just the thing
To keep our crops from harm…
When nature makes our crops to grow
Our farms are thus enhanced
And so it is our duty
To have our fields well fenced…
How sad to see a field of grain
With half it trodden down
By cattle breaking through the fence
When the farmer’s gone to town…
And when he does come home again
His language has no sense
He blames his cattle for it all
When the fault is in the fence…
When trees were plenty to his hand
And work came with a rush
The quickest way it would be done
Was make a fence of brush…
But soon the brush would rot or burn
And then he used his dogs
To keep the cattle from his grain
Until he built of logs…
Then when the timber scarcer grew
Or altogether fails
He goes to work and splits the logs
To make a fence of rails…
So many various kinds of fence
He of each style does tire
And so a different kind he makes
By building with barbed wire…
At last he finds out his mistake
But grieves to think it’s so
The longer that he lives on earth
More foolish does he grow…
He finds some part of all his stock
Is hanging on that fence
His children tearing so many clothes
Is sure to bring him sense…
That man grew so discouraged
He could not smile nor sing
His wife said kindly to him, “dear
Just try this new coil-spring”…
You can just build a fence so high
No horse can e’er get over
And is so strong no bull can break
Into that field of clover…
Our garden stuff will then be safe
To grow up good and tall
We’ll take the prizes at the fairs
Where’er we show next fall…
And smiles and songs came back again
And stayed with him from hence
And all because he just went at
And built a coil-spring fence.

38. ANNUAL WOMEN’S MEETING (Held in Port Elgin, Sept 2,1897) – Antrim Farm – Underwood, Aug 31st, 1897

We thank Thee, O Our Father
For blessings Thou didst send
Since last we met together
Thy love hath had no end…
Amidst the busy whirl of life
Its labours and its care
Amidst its sorrows and its strife
Thou didst our burden share…
O how we each have faltered
Along our Christian way
And still Thou hast not altered
“Meet with us now, we pray”…
Take up the best room in our heart
Be pleased to dwell within
Do Thou the needed grace impart
Cleanse us from doubt and sin…
And as we meet now, in Thy Name
According to Thy Word
(It’s not for power or worldly fame)
Grant us Thy blessing, Lord…
Our women’s heart are sore to-day
For sisters o’er the sea
Who grope in darkness for The Way
To home and heaven and Thee…
Remember, women at Thy cross
Were last to leave Thy side
All other things were only dross
Since Thou, Their Saviour died…
And first to meet Thee on the morn
When Thou, in triumph rose
O’er death and hell, their power shorn
And conquered all Thy foes…
May all who tell The Story
That’s old, and ever new
Just keep Christ and His Glory
The greatest fact, in view.

39. ON FINDING A BED OF VIOLETS IN OCTOBER – Antrim Farm – October 1897

Afar in the woods where the maple is growing
And the tall elm lifts its head in the air
Where the wide-spreading beech its branches is throwing
A bed of wild violets grew quietly there
The sweet little violet, the dear little violet
The little pink violet so pretty and fair…
It’s leaves have the smell of the forest and mountains
In all their wild beauty just as they have grown
And sometimes in lowland near bright sparkling fountains
The little wild violet has a smell of its own
The little pink violet, the dear little violet
The sweet little violet that blooms all alone…
The little pink flowers so meek and so modest
That bloom all unseen so far out of way
And seeks for itself some nice nook in the forest
To spend all alone through the long summer day
The dear little violet, the sweet little violet
The little pink violet that tempts us to stay…
The rose tells of love that is true and undying
The lily speaks of the good and the pure
But the violet loves best where the wild winds are sighing
And “Humility” is what it teaches I’m sure
The sweet little violet, the dear little violet
The little pink violet, its truth will endure.

40. THOUGHTS ON THANKSGIVING (Deuteronomy 8:7, 8, 9) – Antrim Farm – November 1897

We know that pleasant thoughts would come
To Israel’s wandering tribes
When thinking of their future home
Which Moses here describes…
O land of brooks and gurgling springs
Where wheat and barley grew
Of vineyards where the song-birds sing
Where falls the pearly dew…
Where grass could make the valleys green
And corn on hill sides grow
And flocks and herds on mountains seen
Thereby its goodness show…
But now in Canada have we
A land that’s greater far
Than ever ancient Jew did see
This rising Western Star…
O land of rich brood fields of grain!
Where want is still unknown
Where honest toil is sure to gain
A home, — that’s all our own…
O land that’s full of mineral ore
Whose wealth cannot be told
That seems to stretch from shore to shore
With mountains full of gold…
The grandest forests on the globe
A goodly heritage
Where red men still have their abode
And had from age to age…
A land of long bright summer days
And healthful pleasant weather
Where sun doth shine in blissful rays
For months and months together…
A land whose snow is pure and white
And hailed with joy by all
That fills the children with delight
To see the snowflakes fall…
A land whose lakes are mighty seas
Their waters blue and clear
As those of dark blue Galilee
These to all hearts are dear…
A land that’s free to do what’s right
But not to do what’s wrong
Whose sons would rise up in their might
To shield the weak from strong…
A glorious heritage have we
As ever foot hath trod
Then let our hearts still filled be
With love for Home and God.

41.THANKSGIVING DAY – Antrim Farm – November 1897

While other lands in trouble be
In want with plague or war
We sit beneath our own fig tree
Through our Dominion fair
For peace and plenty o’er our land
From East to West the same
From the Pacific’s golden strand
To Atlantic’s foamy main…
The treasures of the sea is ours
The herring and the cod
Our lakes and rivers on us pour
This heritage from God
And by our wooded streams and rills
Are pastures rich and deep
His cattle on a thousand hills
He gives to man to keep…
Our orchards, bending to the ground
With apples gold and red
No finer fruit is to be found
Our Motherland has said
And see our fields of golden grain
Throughout the boundless West
And as we gaze we thus exclaim
“It’s here where farming’s blest”…
That sea of mountains to the west
No where on earth the like
Is full of gold, the very best
From Rossland to Klondyke
And now we’ll think of what’s in store
When dinner out is spread
And loving hands our tea will pour
When Grace has then been said…
Grace —
“Some have meat but canna eat,
While some could eat, but wanted
But we have meat, and we can eat
So let the Lord be thanket”

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