“Memories of Home” is one of three poems by Bombardier P.G. Whapples recorded in Robert Dickinson’s journal.

Memories of Home

Imagine a cool, new forest dell
Your turn at the lane, then at the well,
Into nature’s own store,
The earth as a floor,
Where nothing has changed ten decades or more.
Amongst stately trees,
In a clean healthy breeze,
Mingling with song the humming of bees.

A myriad of colours stretch into the deep,
Of a forest, or listen! The bleating of sheep,
That have wandered astray,
In the heat of the day,
Unknown to the shepherd, asleep in the hay.
Then a dog’s heavy bark,
Or the song of a lark,
Comes through the twilight, before the dark.

While musing of this, ’tis a fine English day,
Where my friends are all happy—and I far away,
In a country way up in the hills, very cold,
In the land where Vesuvius bursts, we are told,
In a cold prison-camp, just over the foam,
From England, and you, and all that is home.