Friday, February 14, 2014

A Valentine Poem from Nutfield



LINES WHEREIN YOUNG JONNEY PRAISES HIS COUSIN, MOLLY PARK, JULY 18, 1777
           By Robert Dinsmoor

Yestre’en I heard young Jonney say
“O! but I lang to see the day,
That cousin Mally I may he,
     To be my wife—
That I might freely wi’ her liv’,
     E’en a’ my life.

She is a bonnie lass indeed,
An’s come o’ right honest breed,
An’ weel she can baith write an’ read,
     An’ speaks right swash—
To get her aff, there’ll be nae need
     To gie much cash.

When’er she enters in my sight,
Her very presence gi’es delight,
For ilka thing ‘bout her is right,
    Her hair sae snod is—
Her shapes by day, her words by night,
    Prooves her a goddess.

She is right canny at her wark,
An’ thinks but little o’ the daurk.
At making hat o’ smoth birch-bark,
     I’m sure she dings—
She, brisk and bonnie as a lark,
     Melodious sings.


Robert Dinsmoor (1757 – 1836) was born in Windham, New Hampshire to Scots Irish immigrants.  He was a simple farmer, but also was a renowned poet known as “The Rustic Bard.”  According to the book Poems of Robert Dinsmoor, page 72, “Mary Park was born July 4, 1761; was daughter of Dea. Robert and Jane (Wear) Park.  Her father came to America when 12 years of age with Alexander Park.  His father, the emigrant, an honest man, who paid his last month’s rent in Ireland Dec. 12, 1728, and brought his receipt with him, which is now a sacred relic.  He was of Scotch blood.  He came in the winter of 1728 -29.  Mary Park became the loved wife of the “Rustic Bard” Dec. 31, 1782, - or Jan. 1, 1738, -- and died, as the Bard says in “16 years and 5 months to a day,”  June 1, 1799, aged 37 yrs; greatly lamented by him.”

Poems of Robert Dinsmoor:  “The Rustic Bard”, by Robert Dinsmoor, James Dinsmoor, edited by Leonard Allison Morrison, Boston, Massachusetts:  Damrell & Upham “Old Corner Book Store”, 1898, pages 71 – 71. 

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Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

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