This charming little poem was originally published in 1881 in The English Fishing Gazette. F.B. Doveton was a cousin of the famed writer Rider Haggard, and a poet of some note in his native Britain. He spent most of his career in the army, and was a noted angler, which is why fishing was a popular theme of his verse.
Frederick Bazett Doveton was a very respected Devonshire poet born in 1841 in Exexter to the late Captain F.B. Doveton of the Royal Madras Fusileers; his father was involved in the Sepoy Rebellion and wrote of his exploits, and his son later spent time in the same brigade.
The author of a number of works of prose and verse, Doveton collected his angling and outdoor poems under the title A Fisherman's Fancies in 1895.
THE ANGLER'S DREAM
by F. B Doveton
The night was cold—a "nipping air!"
I looked into the blaze.
And saw some long lost faces there.
My friends of other days!
They seemed to stand beside a stream,
Whilst yet the year was young;
And sweetly in the Land of Dream
A tender throstle sung.
The flowers of spring were blooming nigh,
The beck was white with foam,
And deftly did I cast my fly
Into the troutlets' home!
They madly dashed at the deceit,
For they were blythe and bold;
But soon they glistened at my feet,
Arrayed in red and gold!
The welkin rung with softest song,
While cloudlets swam above;
As I moved dreamily along.
The earth seemed full of love!
I saw the marigold's fierce fire,
And felt the scented gale,
And still the throstle did not tire
Within that haunted vale!
Anon a pool lurked dark and deep.
Where lights and shades did play,
And then my fly, with airy sweep,
Was sped upon its way!
A sudden plunge, that tried my art,
A lusty trout—no doubt!
Then did I waken with a start
To find the fire—out!
-- Dr. Todd