Oh, English air is fresh and pure
And English homes are bright;
But I must wander far away
And set my course tonight.
The English breeze will stir the leaves,
But I shall not be here
When Spring goes tripping coyly out
And Summer crowns the year.
The Summer sounds I love so well
I shall not hear again:
The merry children running free
And shouting through the lane;
The liquid flutes of little birds
And, melting in a dream,
The whisper of the swaying boughs,
The murmur of the stream.
The wagons rumbling up the road,
The droning of the bees,
The parliament of busy rooks
That caw about the trees.
The air will fill with English songs,
But I shall hear no more
Till God shall bid me steer for home
And set me on the shore.
Oh, then I’ll wander back again
And seek the place I knew
When all the world was young and fair
And all the tales were true.
And I may find a hand or two
That keep a grip for me….
When I come back to English earth
From tossing on the sea.
By Rudolph Chambers Lehmann