Books > Old Books >The Elson Readers Book Six (1910)


Page 347

GREAT AMERICAN AUTHORS
THE VILLAGE BLACKSMITH

He goes on Sunday to the church,
And sits among his boys;
He hears the parson pray and preach;
He hears his daughter's voice
Singing in the village choir,
And it makes his heart rejoice.

It sounds to him like her mother's voice
Singing in Paradise !
He needs must think of her once more,
How in the grave she lies;
And with his hard, rough hand he wipes
A tear out of his eyes.

Toiling-rejoicing-sorrowing,
Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some task begun ;
Each evening sees it close;
Something attempted, something done.
Has earned a night's repose.

Thanks, thanks to thee, my worthy friend,
For the lesson thou has taught!
Thus at the flaming forge of life
Our fortunes must be wrought;
Thus on its sounding anvil shaped
Each burning deed and thought!


NOTES AND QUESTIONS
Historical Note
. The "village smithy" stood "under a spreading chestnut tree" in Brattle Street, Cambridge, not far from the Longfellow home. In time it gave place to a dwelling house, and the chestnut tree had to be cut down. On the morning this event took place many people came out to see the old tree, made famous by the poet,

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