John Kenyon

(1784-1856 / Jamaica)

Casa Mia


Thou wert born where huge Missouri,
Rushing heretofore alone,
Bears to Mississippi dowry
Of more waters than his own;
But hast never learn'd, like me,
From the years of infancy,
With unsated love to look
On one own dear little brook.
Thou hast felt the treeless prairie
In its awful sameness spread;
Countless leagues, that never vary;
Wide well nigh as ocean's bed;

But hast never learned, like me,
From the years of infancy,
How to prize the hedge-row bound
Of one tiny plot of ground.
Thou hast dreamed where endless forest
Clusters on, a realm of trees;
And, to hear thee, half abhorrest
Any woods less vast than these;
For thou ne'er hast learned like me,
From the years of infancy,
How to love, with love unbroke,
Some one tree, this own old oak.
Vaunt thou then, if such thy notion,
Prairie—forest—flung afar;
And thy streams, whose mighty motion
Meets the tides with equal war;
But accord meanwhile to me
What I've loved from infancy,
This one tree—this hedge-row nook—
And my own dear little brook.

Submitted: Tuesday, October 12, 2010
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