Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Finest I've Ever Known

                                          We no longer raise gardens, chickens and hogs
                                          No more smoking chimneys, we now use gas logs

                                          There's no more hog killings on Thanksgiving Day
                                          Only turkeys and hams grace the tables today

                                          We no longer carry water in for the night
                                          There's plenty of running water and baths delight

                                          There's no more sitting by an old oil lamp
                                          A light hangs from the ceiling, an electric revamp

                                          No more traveling preachers, a thing of the past
                                          Big new churches, log churches are in the past

                                          There's no more Store Truck making its way through
                                          Like kids in a candy store, we stood like a statue

                                          An orange and an apple used to be a Christmas treat
                                          Now days electronics are the only thing that's neat

                                         Keeping a milk cow and churning our own buttermilk
                                         They now snarl their nose if its not store bought milk

                                         There's not many clothes now blowing in the wind
                                         We now have clothes dryers and washers that spin

                                         No one takes time to visit their neighbors or the sick
                                         My daddy's not here with his big walking stick

                                        The canning and jelly making days are almost gone
                                         Just a few old timers left to carry on

                                        There's no one left to cure the thrash (Thrush) anymore
                                        My mama's gone and her cure is no more

                                        There's no more prayer and recess in school
                                        It seems everything now has become man's rule

                                        Those old aporns they wore with money tucked away
                                        Is gone too, like their hair tucked in buns of gray

                                        And those old time zinnas my grandma so loved
                                        They now grace heaven with beauty and love

                                        There's no more plowing with an old mule now
                                        They use big tractors but that old mule sure could plow

                                        There's no more hunting foxes, possums and coons
                                        And sitting by a campfire listening to the dogs croon

                                        That good squirrel gravy and dumplins I still smell
                                        My mama sure could make them so yummy and swell

                                        There's no more sleeping with six in the bed
                                        With three at the foot and three at the head

                                        And sweeping the yard with a worn out broom
                                        Praying for some grass to grow really soon

                                        There's no more swinging on those old grapevines
                                        Or playing hopscotch in the sand with hand drawn lines

                                        There's no more crawling through the barbed wire fence
                                        Trying to escape the bull, we didn't have any sense

                                        Playing in the cold creek was a summer time game
                                        Claiming to fall in on a winter's morning wasn't the same

                                        Going fishing at the old mill pond with fishing pole in hand
                                        Losing track of time, the fishing was so grand

                                        Helping mama find Poke Salad in the early spring
                                        Climbing through the brairs and snakes was her thing

                                        Or picking creesy greens from the creek bank each year
                                        Not knowing the difference with mama not here

                                        Going to bed with the chickens on hot summer days
                                        No time change did we have, we got used to the same ways

                                        There's no more robbing the hen's nest in the early morn
                                        Those old hens sure could lay, fed good with corn

                                        Those wonderful old days I loved and once knew
                                         Is now gone and the old ways too

                                        The living was so good, the finest I've ever seen 
                                         I love to go back it makes my heart sing                                    

                                         ©  Susie Swanson, 2013

A sneak peek at my new Book, "Echoes Of Time". Published, 2013


  1. What sweet memories you have!
    I listened to my elders when I was a very young bride, and learned some of these things...but I wonder if anyone is listening and learning these things now?
    I know I have become soft in my ways with electronics and appliances...But I have hauled water, wringer washed and line dried clothes , even cloth diapers!
    And I learned to make my own bread with my hands (no machine), and we still build and fix everything in the house ourselves...all because we were always sort of poor.
    Just last night I was up late packing a deer with ice to keep until taking to the butcher this morning...(Yay!... meat for the winter!)
    What will happen if it all goes backwards, and this generation will not know how to do anything to survive?
    Thanks for this me thinking tonight!
    ~God bless~

    1. Aww, thank you Lisa for sharing these memories with me. I agree with you if it does go backwards I feel sorry for the young generation. They have no clue. Blessings to you.

  2. So many of your precious memories are mine, too, Susie, and you are right - those things are mostly gone now. I wonder if the younger people could even survive the things we've lived through?

  3. I love all the old time ways, we are trying to keep many of them alive...we still heat our cabin with our wood stove and chop the logs with an ax, but we do have running water. I enjoyed this poem, sure brings me back!

    1. Thank you lise. It's good to be able to do that. i admit i'm used to the new ways like washing machines, etc. but if I had to i probably could do it again.

  4. We surely must have had similar childhood experiences, for most all of this was the way I grew up too. Sometimes I long for simpler times, except for washing clothes on a rub board :)

    1. Thank you Charlotte. Yes, I've noticed that also. I wouldn't like going back to that rub board or out house . lol.

  5. Memories, for sure of our time. My kids, kid-lings, etc. will never have these kinds of precious moments to recall ... treasure ... & hold close to their hearts for their generations.
    Love ya! Marydon

    1. Thank you so much Marydon. I agree and it's sad to even think about it. Love ya too.

  6. Susie, If you would just add five more kids to that photo, it could pass for my family.:):) My brother likes to say that we were so poor, we couldn't pay attention.:):) Blessings for a great weekend. xoxo,Susie

  7. Lovely memories, Susie! You captured them so well in this poem. Sounds like you had a wonderful childhood.

  8. Hi Susie! This poem is wonderful, and so true. I tried to remember all the things my Mom and Grandpa taught me, but I know that there are a few things I have forgotten. I have tried hard to pass along what I do know, but many of the young ones in my life don't seem to be all that interested. They all love the fried chicken and gravy but don't want to learn how make it themselves. I had one young woman about twenty years old, tell me not long ago with great surprise, that she didn't know that you could "wash" tennis shoes. She thought that when they just got too dirty you bought another pair! :) Bless her heart. That's one reason why I love your poems so much because they helps us to remember the wonderful old way of life and keep the memories and values alive. We are still continuing with the renovation project. Tony's shoulder is better but he is still having to baby it some. I'm sorry I haven't been able to come by and visit as much. But we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and hope to have it all done by the end of the month. Have a lovely weekend ahead, and thank you Susie for all your sweet comments on my blog, it is always so nice to hear from you and I appreciate them very much. With Love, Delisa :)

    1. Aww, thank you Delisa for your sweet words and for dropping by. It is so sad . I'm glad your husband is doing better and hope they finish your house soon. I know that's so stressful and tiring.Love you too.

  9. Susie,
    What a nice and sentimental poem this is. I smiled when I read about the apples and oranges as Christmas treats. My Mom used to put oranges, apples, nuts, and hard candy in our Christmas stockings every year. I asked my sister why she used to put fruit in our stockings, and she told me it was because her Mother used to put oranges and nuts in her stocking too. Oh, these traditions that carry one. Don't you just love them? It was so good to hear about all the wonderful things that we experienced back in the day. Thank you for this poem today, Susie.