Collected by Garnett Peters For Mary C. Parler
John Pennington Fayetteville, Ark. Aug. 11, 1958
Reel 312, Item 8
Forty Years Ago
I’ve wandered to the village, Tom,
I sat beneath the tree,
Upon the school house playground That sheltered you and me.
But none were left to greet me, Tom And few were left to know Who played with me upon the green Just forty years ago.
The grass was just as green, Tom, Barefooted boys at play Were sporting just as we did then With spirits just as gay.
But the master sleeps upon the hill Which was coated o'er with snow Affording us a sliding place Some forty years ago.
The old schoolhouse is altered some,
The benches are replaced By new ones very like the same Our jack-knives had defaced.
But the same old bricks are in the wall, The bell swings to and fro,
Its music's just the same, dear Tom 'Twas forty years ago.
Near by the spring, upon the elm,
You know you cut your name
Your sweetheart's just beneath it, Tom,
And you did mine the same.
Some heartless wretch has peeled the bark; It's dying sure but slow,
Just as the one whose name you cut Died forty years ago.
Some are in the church yard laid,
Some sleeps beneath the sea;
There's no one left of our old class Excepting you and me.
And when the time shall come, Tom,
And we are called to go,
I hope they lay us where we played Some forty years ago.
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