Grand Haven Daily Tribune February 2, 1898
BY DAVID FLETCHER HUNTON.
There’s a beautiful scene in memory’s hall,
Where all her bright pictures are hung;
And oft when my eyelids half dreamingly fall,
I see the old hill-farm, the cottage and all,
Whose beauties have never been sung.
And there’s where I lived all the beautiful while,
When life was unfadingly bright;
Where my Father’s kind words, and Mother’s sweet smile,
Made that cottage-crowned hill a Heaven-lifted isle,
And childhood, a dream of delight.
And there are the shade-trees extending their arms,
The Garden, walled handsomely’ round:
The Lane to the pasture, with daisy hued charms,
The orchard, the meadow, and neighboring farms,
And the ribs of once furrowed ground.
I see the great Barn, with its “bottomless bay.”
Its scaffolds, and broad threshed floor;
O there’s where I jumped from the beams to the hay,
And hunted for hen’s nests, and thought it but play,
To swing on the great double doors.
Those rafters and eaves, were stuccoed with nests,
And Swallows were twittered there;
There the Woodpecker drummed and nodded his crest,
And the Robin came here to show his red vest,
And bask in the soft summer soft air.
I see the old Orchard once sweet with perfume.
Where birds held their jubilees there:
The King-fisher came like a Knight, with his plume.
The Bobolink swore―as I need to presume:
While singing his mystical air!
And there’s the old Sugar-Bush, stirred by the breeze―
‘Tis sweet to my memory yet!
Why! I’ve traveled there weeks, in snow to my knees,
And carried with neck-yoke, the sap from the trees,
To where the great “Holders” were set.
That brooding old Hill, looking over the land―
The cottage that stood on its brow―
The beautiful landscape on every hand―
It was delightful, and exquisitely grand;
My soul is in love with it now!
That brown-gabled cot was the place of my birth:
To me, twas enchantingly fair;
O, I loved that “Square-Room,” and cleanly swept hearth,
Where my wandering eyes first looked at the earth,
And the dear ones who welcomed me there.
I’ve looked on that Hill, in the long; long ago,
When blossom-time gladdened the hours;
I’ve walked through its fields, when above and below:
They seemed to be dressed for a holiday show;
And sweet with the perfume of flowers.
There are Mountains around that home of the past.
And Villages, thrifty and neat;
Grand old “Escutney”―like a pyramid cast―
Looms up against the sky, gigantic and vast
While Connecticut washes his feet.
“Kearsarge,” and “Monadnock,” can scarcely be seen.
They sleep in a distance so dim;
But away in Vermont, are mountains as green
As Emerald beads, and with valleys between,
Away on the horizon’s rim.
The “White Mountains” gleam in the glad summer time,
And lean their proud heads to the west;
“Mount Washington,” looks from his aerie sublime,
And smiles on the thousands from every clime,
Who go to his cloud-touching nest.
I’ve looked at that Mount from the valley below,
When winter frowned down from on high;
‘Till that brow of beauty, and bosom of snow,
Appeared in the light of the moon’s silvery glow,
Like a throne on the midnight sky!
* * * * *
There’s a wonderful change in that home, today―
That cot has been razed to the ground;
The Garden’s bereft of its floral array;
The Barn has gone down in the storms of a day―
And the Builder, cannot be found!
Old Time, and the vandals, have ravaged it, quite,
And left it alone to its fate:;
But Oh! could I kneel on its ruins tonight,
I’d kiss the dear sod where I first saw the light,
And weep for its desolate state!
Ah! Yes, I’ll remember the Land I adore;
Its Mountains, and Valleys below:
And may my last look on earth’s storm-beaten shore,
Be the beautiful Hill I loved of yore,
In the years of the long ago!
Oh! I will remember till memory dies;
Till the future begins to unroll;
When daylight seems fading away from the skies;
And the splendors of Eden fall on my eyes,
May this Picture then gladden my Soul!
Grand Haven, Mich.,
November, 27, 1867
Microfilm Scan: Memory's Picture