A Providential Escape - Poem by James McIntyre
Providential escape of Ruby and Niel McLeod, children of Angus McLeod,
Ingersoll, little Neil McKay McLeod, a child three years of age, was carried
under a covered raceway, upwards of one hundred yards, the whole distance
being either covered over with roadway, buildings or ice.
A wonderous tale we now do trace,
Of little children fell in race ;
The youngest of these little dears,
The boy's age is but three years.
While coasting o'er the treacherous ice-
precious pearls of great price-
The elder Ruby, the daughter,
Was rescued from the ice cold water.
But horrid death each one did feel
Had sure befallen poor little Neil ;
Consternation did people fill,
And they cried 'shut down the mill.'
But still no person yet could tell
What had the poor child befel [sic] ;
The covered race, so long and dark,
Of hopes there scarcely seemed a spark.
Was he held fast as if in vice,
Wedged 'mong the timbers and the ice,
Or, was there for him ample room
For to float down the narrow flume?
Had he found there a watery grave,
Or been borne on crest of wave ?
Think of the mothers agony, wild,
Gazing through dark tunnel for her child.
But soon as Partlo started mill,
Through crowd there ran a joyous thrill,
When he was quickly borne along,
The little hero of our song.
Alas ! of life there is no trace,
And be is black all over face ;
Though he then seemed as if in death,
Yet quickly, they restored his breath.
Think now how mother she adored
Her sweet dear child, to her restored,
And her boundless gratitude
Unto the author of all good.
Swept through dark passage 'neath the road,
Saved only by the hand of God,
No wonder Father now feels proud
Of little Niel McKay McLeod.
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