The Little Old Road





There's a breath of May in the breeze

On the little old road;

May in hedges and trees,

May, the red and the white,

May to left and to right,

Of the little old road.



There's a ribbon of grass either side

Of the little old road;

It's a strip just so wide,

A strip nobody owns,

Where a man's weary bones

When he feels getting old

May lie crushing the gold

Of the silverweed flower

For a long lazy hour

By the little old road.



There's no need to guide the old mare

On the little old road.

She knows that just there

Is the big gravel pit

(How we played in it

As mites of boys

In our corduroys!)

And that here is the pond

With the poplars beyond,

And more May--always May,

Away and away

Down the little old road.



There's a lot to make a man glad

On the little old road

(It's the home-going road),

And a lot to make him sad.

Ah! he'd like to forget,

But he can't, not just yet,

With chaps still out there. . . .

She's stopping, the steady old mare.

Is it here the road bends?

So the long journey ends

At the end of the old road,

The little old road.



There's some one, you say, at the gate

Of the little old house by the road?

Is it Mother? Or Kate?

And they're not going to mind

That, since Wypers, [1] I'm blind,

And the road is a long dark road?



GERTRUDE VAUGHAN.





[1] The Battle of Ypres.





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