From the Rock Island Argus, August 29, 1913. By Henry Howland.
One who had traveled far and seen
The lands that poets praise,
Who knew the hills and plains of France
And England’s flowery ways,
Who through the old world and the new
Had passed with wondering eyes,
Stopped where a toiler stood, one day,
And heard his pensive sighs.
The scene that spread before them there
Had naught to give delight;
There were no lovely vales, no streams
Nor snowy peaks in sight;
Nor saw no ships with white sails spread,
Nor gazed at fruitful plains;
The fields were small and poor and bare,
No flowers lined the lanes.
He that had seen Yosemite
And journeyed down the Rhine,
Who had beheld the snow upon
The tallest Apennine,
Spoke of the wonders of the world;
The other shook his head:
“Here is the fairest scene of all
The world contains,” he said.
“But here,” the traveler exclaimed,
“Is neither lofty height
Nor ancient castle that may once
Have housed a gallant knight;
Here is no splendid waterfall,
No rich plain spreads away—
Yet here is laid the fairest scene
In all the world, you say?”
“Here is the fairest scene of all,”
The simple one replied,
And pointed to a cottage where
Poor vines crawled up the side.
“There are no castles here; the fields
Are small and poor and bare,
Yet here is earth’s most lovely spot—
The one I love is there.”