Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, HUGH THORNDYKE, by ALICE CARY



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HUGH THORNDYKE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Egalton's hills are sunny
Last Line: Are all we need below.
Subject(s): Conduct Of Life; Work; Honesty


EGALTON'S hills are sunny,
And brave with oak and pine,
And Egalton's sons and daughters
Are tall and straight and fine.

The harvests in the summer
Cover the land like a smile,
For Egalton's men and women
Are busy all the while.

'T is merry in the mowing
To see the great swath fall,
And the little laughing maidens
Raking, one and all.

Their heads like golden lilies
Shining over the hay,
And every one among them
As sweet as a rose in May.

And yet despite the favor
Which Heaven doth thus alot,
Egalton has its goblin,
As what good land has not?

Hugh Thorndyke -- (peace be with him,
He is not living now) --
Was tempted by this creature
One day to leave his plow,

And sit beside the furrow
In a shadow cool and sweet,
For the lying goblin told him
That he would sow his wheat.

And told him this, morever,
That if he would not mind,
His house should burn to ashes,
His children be struck blind!

So, trusting half, half frightened,
Poor Hugh with many a groan
Waited beside the furrow,
But the wheat was never sown.

And when the fields about him
Grew white, -- with very shame
He told his story, giving
The goblin all the blame.

Now Hugh's wife loved her husband,
And when he told her this,
She took his brawny hands in hers
And gave them each a kiss,

Saying, we ourselves this goblin
Shall straightway lay to rest, --
The more he does his worst, dear Hugh,
The more we'll do our best!

To work they went, and all turned out
Just as the good wife said,
And Hugh was blest, -- his corn that year,
Grew higher than his head.

They sing a song in Egalton
Hugh made there, long ago,
Which says that honest love and work
Are all we need below.





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