Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE OLD TIMES, by LETITIA ELIZABETH LANDON



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THE OLD TIMES, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Do you recall what now is living only
Last Line: The dear old times.
Alternate Author Name(s): L. E. L.; Maclean, Letitia
Subject(s): Past


DO you recall what now is living only
Amid the memories garnered at the heart? --
The quiet garden, quiet and so lonely,
Where fruit and flowers had each an equal part?
When we had gathered cowslips in the meadow
We used to bear them to the ancient seat,
Moss-grown, beneath the apple-tree's soft shadow,
Which flung its rosy blossoms at our feet,
In the old, old times,
The dear old times.

Near was the well o'er whose damp walls were weeping
Stonecrop, and grounsel, and pale yellow flowers,
While o'er the banks the strawberry plants were creeping
In the white beauty of June's earliest hours.
The currant-bush and lilac grew together;
The bean's sweet breath was blended with the rose;
Alike rejoicing in the pleasant weather
That brought the bloom to these, the fruit to those,
In the old, old times,
The dear old times.

There was no fountain over marble falling;
But the bees murmur'd one perpetual song,
Like soothing waters, and the birds were calling
Amid the fruit-tree blossoms all day long;
Upon the sunny grass-plot stood the dial,
Whose measured time strange contrast with ours made:
Ah! was it omen of life's after trial,
That even then the hours were told in shade,
In the old, old times,
The dear old times?

But little recked we then of those sick fancies
To which in after life the spirit yields:
Our world was of the fairies and romances
With which we wandered o'er the summer fields;
Then did we question of the down-balls blowing
To know if some slight wish would come to pass;
If showers we feared, we sought where there was growing
Some weather-flower which was our weather-glass:
In the old, old times,
The dear old times.

Yet my heart warms at these fond recollections,
Breaking the heavy shadow on my day.
Ah! who hath cared for all the deep affections --
The love, the kindness I have thrown away?
The dear old garden! There is now remaining
As little of its bloom as rests with me.
Thy only memory is this sad complaining,
Mourning that never more for us can be
The old, old times,
The dear old times.





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