Collected Poems
And for the long first quarter of a minute
Gazed with incredulous eyes, forgetful quite
Of breezes and of me and of all else
Tinder the scorching sun but a smooth-cut field,
Faint yellow in the distance. I was young,
But there were a few things that I could see,
And this was one of them. " Well, well! " said he;
And " Archibald will be surprised, I think, "
Said I. But all my childhood subtlety
Was lost on Isaac, for he strode along
Like something^a4-ef Ilumui ' -*pagerful
Antf^awful on the wayside, so I thought.
Also I thought how good it was to be
So near the end of my short-legged endeavor
To keep the pace with Isaac for five miles.
Hardly had we turned in from the main road
When Archibald, with one hand on his back
And the other clutching his huge-headed cane,
Came limping down to meet us. " Well ! well ! well ! "
Said he; and then he looked at my red face,
All streaked with dust and sweat, and shook my hand,
And said it must have been a right smart walk
That we had had that day from Tilbury Town.
" Magnificent, " said Isaac; and he told
About the beautiful west wind there was
Which cooled and clarified the atmosphere.
" You must have made it with your legs, I guess, "
Said Archibald; and Isaac humored him
With one of those infrequent smiles of his
Which he kept in reserve, apparently,
For Archibald alone. " But why, " said he,
" Should Providence have cider in the world
If not for such an afternoon as this? "
And Archibald, with a soft light in his eyes,