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- DON'T you remember sweet Alice, Ben Bolt,--
- Sweet Alice whose hair was so brown,
- Who wept with delight when you gave her a smile,
- And trembled with fear at your frown?
- In the old church-yard in the valley, Ben Bolt,
- In a corner obscure and alone,
- They have fitted a slab of the granite so gray,
- And Alice lies under the stone.
- Under the hickory tree, Ben Bolt,
- Which stood at the foot of the hill,
- Together we've lain in the noonday shade,
- And listened to Appleton's mill.
- The mill-wheel has fallen to pieces, Ben Bolt,
- The rafters have tumbled in,
- And a quiet which crawls round the walls as you gaze
- Has followed the olden din.
- Do you mind of the cabin of logs, Ben Bolt,
- At the edge of the pathless wood,
- And the button-ball tree with its motley limbs,
- Which nigh by the doorstep stood?
- The cabin to ruin has gone, Ben Bolt,
- The tree you would seek for in vain;
- And where once the lords of the forest waved
- Are grass and golden grain.
- And don't you remember the school, Ben Bolt,
- With the master so cruel and grim,
- And the shaded nook in the running brook
- Where the children went to swim?
- Grass grows on the master's grave, Ben Bolt,
- The spring of the brook is dry,
- And of all the boys who were schoolmates then
- There are only you and I.
- There is a change in the things I loved, Ben Bolt,
- They have changed from the old to the new;
- But I feel in the deeps of my spirit the truth,
- There never was change in you.
- Twelve months twenty have past, Ben Bolt,
- Since first we were friends--yet I hail
- Your presence as a blessing, your friendship a truth,
- Ben Bolt of the salt-sea gale.
- Thomas Dunn English
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