Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > England
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV.  1876–79.
 
Bramble-Rise
Bramble-Rise
Frederick Locker-Lampson (1821–1895)
 
WHAT wonders greet my waking eyes
At last! Can this be Bramble-Rise,
    Once smallest of its shire?
How changed, and changing from my dream;
The dumpy church used not to seem        5
    So dumpy in the spire.
 
This village is no longer mine;
And though the inn has changed its sign,
    The beer may not be stronger:
The river, dwindled by degrees,        10
Is now a brook,—the cottages
    Are cottages no longer.
 
The thatch is slate, the plaster bricks,
The trees have cut their ancient sticks,
    Or else the sticks are stunted:        15
I ’m sure these thistles once grew figs,
The geese were swans, and once the pigs
    More musically grunted.
 
Where early reapers whistled shrill,
A whistle may be noted still,        20
    The locomotive’s ravings.
New custom newer want begets,—
I loved a bank for violets,—
    I loathe a bank for savings.
 
That voice I have not heard for long!        25
So Patty still can sing the song
    A merry playmate taught her;
I know the strain, but much suspect
’T is not the child I recollect,
    But Patty, Patty’s daughter;        30
 
And has she too outlived the spells
Of breezy hills and silent dells
    Where childhood loved to ramble?
Then life was thornless to our ken,
And, Bramble-Rise, thy hills were then        35
    A rise without a bramble.
*        *        *        *        *
 
 
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