OLD OAKEN BUCKET, 1909
How dear to this heart are the scenes of my childhood,
When fond recollection presents them to view,
The orchard, the meadow, the deep tangled wildwood,
And ev’ry lov’d spot which my infancy knew.
The wide spreading stream, the mill that stood near it,
The bridge and the rock where the cataract fell;
The cot of my father, the dairy house by it,
And e'en the rude bucket that hung in the well.
That mosscover’d bucket I hail as a treasure,
For often at noon, when return’d from the field,
I found it the source of an exquisite pleasure,
The purest and sweetest that nature can yield.
How ardent I seized it with hands that were glowing,
And quick to the white pebbled bottom it fell;
Then soon with the emblem of health overflowing,
And dripping with coolness it rose from the well.
How sweet from the green mossy rim to receive it,
As pois’d on the curb it reclin’d to my lips,
Not a full flowing goblet could tempt me to leave it,
Tho’ fill’d with the nectar that Jupiter sips.
And now far removed from the loved situation,
The tear of regret will intrusively swell;
As fancy reverts to my father’s plantation,
And sighs for the bucket that hung in the well.
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