FARMER GREY had a flock fair as farmer might own;
Love tended and sheltered were they;
They trod on his toes, as the younglings will do,
But his heart was untrodden alway,
Till the years, rolling onward, browned brighter the curls,
And the heads from his knee reached his shoulder;
And then, as tho' Nature had done something odd,
He marvelled to find them grown older.
When fair blushing Alice and young Reuben Lee
Came homeward the longest way round
From school and from church, he wondered the while
What the children to talk about found.
Till Rose tied her hair with a twist and a curl,
And John trained a whisker to grow,