The ash grove, how graceful, how plainly ’tis speaking;
The harp through it playing has language for me,
When ever the light through it’s branches is breaking
A host of kind faces is gazing on me.
The friends of my childhood again are before me;
Each step wakes a memory as freely I roam.
With soft whispers laden the leaves rustle o’er me;
The ash grove, the ash grove alone is my home.
Down yonder green valley where streamlets meander,
When twilight is fading I pensively rove,
Or in the bright noontide in solitude wander
Amid the dark spaces of that lonely ash grove.
‘Twas there while the blackbird was cheerfully singing
I first met that dear one, the joy of my heart.
Around us for gladness the bluebells were springing,
The ash grove, the ash grove that sheltered my heart.
My lips smile no more, my heart loses its lightness;
No dream of the future my spirit can cheer.
I only can brood on the past and its brightness;
The dear ones I long for again gather here.
From ev’ry dark nook they press forward to meet me;
I lift up my eyes to the broad leafy dome,
And others are there, looking downward to greet me;
The ash grove, the ash grove again is my home.
Words: John Oxenford (1812 – 1877)