Charles Badger Clark

(1883 - 1957 / Albia, Iowa)

The Trail O' Love - Poem by Charles Badger Clark

My love was swift and slender
As an antelope at play,
And her eyes were gray and tender
As the east at break o' day,
And I sure was shaky hearted
And her flower face was pale
On that silver night we parted,
When I sang along the trail:

Oh, moon above the pine,
Like the matin' birds in Springtime,
I will twitter while you shine.
Rich as ore with gold a-glowin',
Sweet as sparklin' springs a-flowin',
Strong as redwoods ever growin',
So will be this love o' mine.

I rode across the river
And beyond the far divide,
Till the echo of 'forever'
Staggered faint behind and died.
For the long trail smiled and beckoned
And the free wind blowed so sweet,
That life's gayest tune, I reckoned,
Was my hawse's ringin' feet.

Oh, stars, look down and sigh,
For a poison spring will sparkle
And the trustin' drinker die.
And a rovin' bird will twitter
And a worthless rock will glitter
And the maiden's love is bitter
When the man's is proved a lie.

Last the rover's circle guidin'
Brought me where I used to be,
And I met her, gaily ridin'
With a smarter man than me.
Then I raised my dusty cover
But she didn't see nor hear,
So I hummed the old tune over,
Laughin' in my hawse's ear:

Oh, sun, look down and smile
If the snowflake specks the desert
Or the yucca blooms awhile.
Ay! what gloom the mountain covers
Where the driftin' cloud shade hovers!
Ay! the trail o' parted lovers,
Where 'forever' lasts a mile!

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, July 9, 2016

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