Hitchinstone Poem.

The late Mr. A. Smith, late of Cowling, had a deep and abiding love for the local moors. In the company of Rev. C. E. Penrose, a former minister of the Cowling Methodist Church, who, like Mr. Smith, was a keen naturalist and entomologist and knew almost every inch of local moorland. His impressions, following one of his visits, are given in the following lines, which have a sincere ring about them:

THE MOORS

We two together, by the silent pool
Watching the skaters flit to and fro,
No word was spoken, but we silently gazed
In each other’s face, and prepared to go.

We wandered on, ‘neath bog and purple heather,
Varied thoughts in our mind were borne,
‘Til neath the noontide heat we sat
Beneath the shade of the Hitchingstone.

We two together shared our frugal meal
Our drink was nature’s gift to men.
My friend, he talked to me of this and that,
And listening, felt inspired again.

Again that deep sweet silence twixt us fell,
Did we dream of elves, or forests lone?
Or of Druid hunters, which long have slept
Beneath the shade of the Hitchingstone?

We two together, clasped each other’s hand
Then he crossed the moor, till he reached the hill
Then he waved his hand, and I answered back,
The echo died, and all was still.

Can it otherwise be, with friends who pass
From our life, leaving no regret to atone?
Thus did I muse, in that hollowed spot
Beneath the shade of the Hitchingstone.

I sat there gazing with sightless eyes
Across the wide and trackless moor,
Memories of rambles on hill and dale
Thro’ meadows and woods where torrents roar.

“Hope springs eternal in the breast”
Came the words of the bard as I mused alone,
I trust that again we together shall meet
Beneath the shade of the Hitchingstone.

Taken from Marion Swales’s scrapbook of newscuttings 5th Dec. 1943?