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Howard Austin


I've come back to the old home farm,
I've come back through the years;
I've wandered through the sacred rooms
That knew our joys and tears:
I've lived again my childhood days,
Their happiness, their woe;
As in review pass memories
Of Fifty Years Ago.


The sun is shining just as bright,
The sky is just as blue;
The air a tonic to inspire,
Rejuvenate, renew:
The maples old their shadows cast,
Each bough I seem to know;
You say, "They've changed,' Well, so have I,
Since Fifty Years Ago.


The blue-grass yard is just as green,
The house is just as white;
The pickets straight no longer stand
As sentinels at night:
The lilac bush is drooping now,
Ere long 'twill have to go;
Yet, bravely brings forth blossoms sweet
As Fifty Years Ago.


The dear old creek has altered some,
My eyes again must look;
'Twas then a mighty torrent wild,
Today, a sluggish brook.
A play-ground then for you and me,
Spread o'er with ice and snow;
Oh what a change, or is it I,
Since Fifty Years Ago.


With shaded eyes I scanned the field,
Those rolling acres dear;
It brought back mem'ries to my heart -
I wiped away a tear.
The hills and valleys just the same,
The high spots and the low;
And with me walked the ones I loved
Just Fifty Years Ago.


The timothy down in the vale,
The corn on higher ground;
The ripened oats a restless sea,
I heard entrancing sound -
Sweet-apples thudding in the grass,
Back there I seemed to go;
Found nature's balm to heal all hurts,
As Fifty Years .Ago.


And Sisters, Brothers, Mother, Dad,
In hallowed mem'ry stored;
It matters little if we're here
Or gone to our reward.
We're born, we live, we pass, and then
Our faith would have us know;
Again we'll meet and love and live,
As Fifty Years Ago.


Yes, we can smile out through the tears
Of memory tonight;
Though changes come, 'tis better so,
Our future, dark or bright.
With inspiration in our hearts
We'll from the old home go;
And tread again the mountain heights,
As Fifty Years Ago.




H. B. Austin