With pen in hand, I shall contrast, The present moments with the past And mark difference, not by grains, But weighed by feelings, joys and pains. Calm, tranquil—far from fashion’s gaze, Passed all my earliest, happy days Sweetly flew the golden hours, In St. Mary’s woodland bowers Or my father’s simple hall, Oped to whomsoe’er might call Pains or cares we seldom knew All the hours so peaceful flew Concerts sweet we oft enjoyed, Books our leisure time employed Friends on every side appeared From whose minds no ill I feared If by chance, one gave me pain The wish to wound me not again Quick expressed in accents kind Cast a joy throughout my mind That, to have been a moment pained, Seemed like bliss but just attained. Whene’er in fault, to be reproved, With gratitude my heart was moved, So mild and gentle were their words It seemed as soft as song of birds For well I knew, that each behest, Was warmed by love—convincing test. Thus passed the morning of my days, My only wish, to gain the praise Of friends I loved, and neighbours kind, And keep a calm and heavenly mind. My efforts, kindly were received, Nor grieved, nor was myself aggrieved. But ah! how changed is every scene, Our little hamlet, and the green, The long rich green, where warriors played, And often, breezy elm-wood shade. How changed, since full of strife and fear, The world hath sent its votaries here. The tree cut down—the cot removed, The cot the simple Indian loved, The busy strife of young and old To gain one sordid bit of gold By trade’s o’er done plethoric moil, And lawsuits, meetings, courts and toil. Adieu, to days of homebred ease, When many a rural care could please, We trim our sail anew, to steer By shoals we never knew were here, And with the star flag, raised on high Discover a new dominion nigh, And half in joy, half in fear, Welcome the proud Republic here.