Under the Locust Boughs by Tom Lloyd Finlayson

To “J.” — written under the locust trees along the banks of the Niagara


Ussher’s Creek at the Niagara River Parkway
Image courtesy of Niagara Falls Public Library

In a realm of song and shine,
Where God’s sweetest wild flowers twine,
By Niagara’s singing stream,
Last night in a golden dream,
Wandered I, while at my side
Was a laughing maid, blue-eyed.
Spun from the silk of the corn
Were her tresses, waist length worn;
Fragile, as small pinkest shells
Her wee ears; like jingling bells
Tinkling in the soul of me
Her pure laugh of ecstacy.
Underneath the blossoming boughs
Of the locust, tender vows
Once again our young hearts made;
While the violins that played
Of the breeze, through blooms above,
Thrilled our souls with God’s first love

Source: Tom Lloyd Finlayson. Songs of Niagara Frontier and Other Poems; Autographed by the Author. St. Thomas, Sutherland Press, Limited. n.d.

Judging from the locations mentioned in the poems in this pamphlet it seems that Finlayson spent his childhood in Fort Erie, Ontario.

Robert Frost by atlantic


The neighbourhood where I live
‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡is surrounded

So everywhere you look
‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡There is a thin green canopy

A living, breathing enclosure
‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡away from the bustle of
‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡the city
‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡and nearby highways.

I don’t know
‡‡‡‡‡‡about fences
‡‡‡but trees?

‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡‡Trees make good neighbours.

Source: The author, 2019

atlantic was born and raised in Niagara Falls, where he still resides. A selection of his work is available on Instagram

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