1899

55. Thoughts on communion | 56. May
57. Bumblebee up my pants | 58 Laying the cornerstone for the church
59. The Bruce pioneers

55. THOUGHTS ON COMMUNION – Antrim Farm – January 15, 1899

Our thoughts go back to Judah’s land
So many years ago
An upper room, a little band
That loved their “Master” so
And gathered round the paschal feast
As oft they’d done before
And had not thought the blood of beasts
Would be a type no more
The time had come when types were done
And symbols passed away
As shadows flee before the sun
And dawn shall turn to day
No more should blood of any beast
On Jewish altars slain
Cleanse from man’s soul the very least
Of sin’s dark fearful stain
For now the blood of God’s Own Son
Would lift the darkest stain
From off the soul of every one
Who’d truly seek his name
And still, though nineteen hundred years
Have nearly passed away
His presence doth our souls still cheer
Upon Communion Day

56. MAY – Antrim Farm – May 1899

The blackbird with his glossy coat
And bright and sparkling eye
Now clicks and whistles from his throat
Thanks for the worm he spies
The robin’s breast is far more bright
Than when he went away
He sings his song by early light
To show he’s glad it’s May
And smaller birds their chorus keep
From morn till set of sun
And sing their prayers before they sleep
God hears them every one
Our own strong-lunged Canadian band
How keen they are to play
And over all this Northern land
They sing out — this is May
And all the flowers that deck our fields
Do lift their heads to heaven
In silent praise that nature yields
Is to their Maker given
The grazing herds their freedom love
The lambs to skip and play
As well the cooing of the dove
Each sings out — this is May
The husbandman has sown his seed
On fields both brown and bare
And trusts his Father still to feed
And make the grain grow there
It may be long till harvest time
How long, we cannot say
We know that things are growing fine
Now, in the month of May

57. BUMBLEBEE UP MY PANTS – Antrim Farm – June 1899

I had been to the house of God
To sing His praise and read His word
His servant preached with usual zeal
And did his best to make us feel
That we were sinners, one and all
Just ruined by old Adam’s fall
It was a blessed day in June
My soul and nature were in tune
With dinner o’er and body fed
I thought on what the preacher said
And so, I then became a rover
And wandered by a field of clover
Where bees were busy gathering honey
‘Twould bring their owner in some money
And made it too, by Sunday labour
And worse still, filched it from a neighbor
My thoughts soon turned to dairy men
Who milks his dozen cows, and then
With awful haste makes for the gate
For fear at church he might be late
But if a poor man hoed his taters
His name would be in all the papers
He’s soon be fined for Sunday labour
And shock the soul of his milking neighbor
And thought, as thoughts so often do
And preachers work on Sunday too
And so they too —- — and then a fiz
As something up my pant leg riz
I did not finish out my think
For stings now came as fast as wink
Of course I did not care a fig
Suppose I danced an Irish jig
One thing I’m sure, I did not sing
Although I danced the Highland Fling
I slapped them here, I slapped them there
And often missed in my despair
Then upward sure they all did creep
For, to be still they would not keep
At last, they got up to the part
Where nature made my legs to start
And though a part of the human frame
It often goes without a name
And though I tried my very best
‘Twas awful slow, this getting undressed
When all o’er, I looked to see
What sort of legs they had left on me
There are marks I,m sure, that are bound to stay
All through my life, to my dying day
To love these bees, of course I shant
I’ll never forget them up my pants

58. LAYING THE CORNER STONE FOR THE METHODIST CHURCH, TIVERTON – Antrim Farm – 1899, Underwood

“These churches of His grace
How beautiful they stand
The honour of our native place
And bulwark of our land”
So sang the poet years ago
And so we sing to-day
Thereby our faith by works we show
As we this stone now lay
For faith and works go hand in hand
No odds what doubters say
‘Twas faith and works that cleared the land
Where we do stand to-day
The pioneers who entered in
Where red men used to roam
Had faith that works would surely win
And make them here a home
So now we look around to-day
On hamlet and on farms
Where fields are full of grain and hay
And every prospect charms
In this fair Canada of ours
How happy we should be
Heaven’s blessing still upon us pour
With Christian liberty
“God of Our Fathers”, see us now
And hear our humble prayers
While with uncovered heads we bow
And cast on Thee our cares
May all who labour at these walls
Be ‘neath Thy special care
And let no accident befall
Those who this labour share
We ask not, that the rich may meet
With those of earthly fame
And strive to have a foremost part
Or win a prominent name
But the poor, humb sin-sick hearts
Who feel their load of sin
Who know temptation’s bitter smarts
May they, may they come in
We pray for blessings on our Queen
And all her great domain
That Bible truths may rule supreme
And equal rights maintain
Still may these churches of His grace
Stand beautiful and grand
The honour of our native place
And bulwarks of our land

59. THE BRUCE PIONEERS – Antrim Farm – July, 1899

How oft does the scenes of the past come before us
As day after day hurries quickly along
The present is lost, by a mantle thrown o’er us
It may be by shadows, or oft by a song
Let memory bring up to our view from its treasures
May be things that will cause us to drop some hot tears
But all of the past was not made in one measure
No more were all those of the Bruce Pioneers
They played far a part in the homes of their childhood
And different too were the songs that they sung
But they settled together in this Bruce County wildwood
And many long days have their sharp axes rung
This was only the home of the wild Indian Rover
Who shared it as well with the bears and the deers
It now smiles in homesteads with fruit trees and clover
All thanks to the work of the Bruce Pioneers
Though rough were the logs in the walls of their dwelling
And small were the windows that let in the light
What fun they oft had I am sure there is no telling
And sweet was their sleep and their dreams through the night
Though oft sorely pressed by a poor scanty larder
They stuck to their lots and their shanties so dear
They would never give up so they just worked the harder
They were made of good stuff, was each Bruce Pioneer
But let’s never forget that through all their hard labour
Their cares and their toils ne’er embittered their life
For they did what all sensible men (to do) should endeavour
They obtained heaven’s best blessing a good thrifty wife
They had their full share of this world’s grief and sadness
And many a time were their eyes wet with tears
For the loss of some loved one who had filled home with gladness
They too had their sorrows, the Bruce Pioneers
Though many have gone from the scenes of their labours
We hope to the land of the good and the blest
Let us never forget those kindly old neighbours
That so often in homespun were quietly dressed
When the last of this hardy old band shall have left us
Don’t think us un-manly if we drop a few tears
Let us always remember the “HAND” that bereft us
Is the “HAND” that first gave us the Bruce Pioneers

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