(Lower Newlands is an old Tudor farmhouse where, thanks to the generosity of Robert Boucher, my wife and I spent three very happy post war years. In those days it was amidst orchards and a meadow. This then is a story of one of those years)
Walnuts fell on grass wet with dew
Leaves on the trees were of every hue
When we moved to our home with joy untold
Our very first house four hundred years old.
The cat in the hearth with contentment purred
As we sat by the fire was that a voice we heard?
“Your most welcome” the walls seemed to say
“You will be happy here for as long as you stay.”
Our house kept us safe away from the storm
As we lay in our bed all snug and warm
Howling winds blew and rain lashed the window
But all would be well as we woke on the morrow.
Cherry trees in the orchard all white and aglow
Blossom falls softly like drifting snow
Sun shine on lilacs now in full bloom
Through open windows perfume every room.
Into the summer when corn turns yellow
With apples and pears other fruit mellow
Long balmy nights with owls on the wing
Somewhere in the dark nightingales sing.
Peace in the hopfields briefly broken
As families earn the tallyman’s token
The smell of the wood fire as tin kettles boil
For a fresh cup of tea and a break from their toil.
Drinks at the ‘Plough’ on a Saturday night
Walking home hand in hand with moon shining bright
Friends that would stay to tea on a Sunday,
A wistful thought of work on the Monday.
So quickly those happy days slipped onto the past
Sadly for us they were not meant to last
But oh what memories of joy untold
In our very first house four hundred years old.