Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Voices from the Past: Fishing by Moonlight (1901)

Today we feature a poet by Charles Davis Pratt about a distracted pair of anglers and a moonlit night. Quite a charming little piece, if you ask me, and we might even forgive them for not catching fish. After all, the fishing IS better over at Long Pond.

Fishing by Moonlight (1901)


Charles Davis Platt

WE went a-fishing t'other night, 

Two of us in a boat;
The air was cool, the moon shone bright, 

In sooth, it was a lovely sight, 

As we sat side by side, a-float,

Two of us in a boat.

We flung our lines and watched a-while.
But soon forgot to look 

For fish, and the moon began to smile

To see us fishing in such style;
Said the moon, "They'll never hook
A fish, unless they look."

The waters rippled all around,
The fish came swimming by; 

They saw our lines together wound—

Said they, "What is that gentle sound ?
Is that a fishing-smack ? O fie!"
And they went swimming by.

We didn't catch a fish that night,
But over on Long Pond 

They caught a-plenty by the light

Of the same moon that shone so bright
On us two happy lovers fond
Who fished upon Green Pond.

And if you ask me to explain
Why, over on Long Pond,
They caught a-plenty, while in vain
We threw our lines, we lovers twain—
'Tis simply this, that down beyond
It's better fishing on Long Pond.

-- Dr. Todd

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