James Payn

Once more upon this happy hill
Doth yet my free foot bound at will;
About those cliffs, whose hearts of stone
To spade and mattock inly groan,
Well to reward the miner's pains,
In wealth from out a thousand veins,
Poor and past use, in age resigned
To ruin like our human kind,
And now and then o'erwhelming all,
'Midst sullen thunder, in their fall;
Above the moorlands, brown and shorn,
On whose rough beds the winds are born,
From hardy north-blast, flinging wreaths
Of cradled snow, to that which breathes
Too infant-like to bear its tale
Of heathery sweetness to the vale;
And through those woods, my boyhood knew
And loved so well, whose memories strew
Their pathways thick as leaves
Upon the dreary autumn eves;
Once more I tread these pleasant fields
With chainless heart, fair Devon yields
Once more the old accustomed rest,
Most welcome as most absent guest.