The Woods

In loving memory of Jay Walter Ames
January 22, 1921-February 11, 1999

Cold, cold, dark December,
Day of dread few now remember,
A dying mother spoke to her son,
Standing silent at the edge of her bed,
"You be a good boy." her last words said,
Short life its course had run.

Eager to learn, for schooling he pled,
"The woods will be your classroom", his grandfather said,
"From the double-bitted axe you will come to know
all that is good." and thus it was so.
In knowledge of lumber all others he surpassed,
Its making and use came full to his grasp.

When dark days of war hung black as a pall
Over the world, He answered the call,
To pay whatever price to him should befall,
Not one ever known to shirk or slack,
Fighting his way through a carpet of flack,
He dropped the bombs that broke Hitler's back.

The job then done, and no further alarm,
He returned to the woods, and bought a farm,
There he raised wheat, oats, and corn,
There to him five children were born.
But not to last, joy faded fast,
And over him was loneliness cast.

At the edge of the woods in humble abode,
A double shift his usual load,
He lived with his sons three, two, then one,
Alone with each other,
For lack of another,
To brighten the sun.

Then Love and Faith beyond compare,
Came to the woods, his life to share,
And showered him with Her untiring care,
His torn soul and body to mend,
With his truest Friend,
To the very end--

When he went to the woods, not to return;
Life's final mystery to learn.
Into the heavenly classroom so bright,
Filled with God's own shining light,
Long lost mother restored now to sight,
Clutches him in her arms.
He tells her, with his radiant smile,
"Mother, I was a good boy, all the while."

---Brian M. Ames

Poem, arrangement and MIDI sequence copyright © 1997, 1999 Brian M. Ames.

accesses. Updated 2/15/99

 This page copyright © 1999 Brian M. Ames All rights reserved.
Music: Leaning On the Everlasting Arms