A lonely task it is to plough!
All day the black and clinging soil
Rolls like a ribbon from the mould-board's
Glistening curve. All day the horses toil
Battling with the flies—and strain
Their creaking collars. All day
The crickets jeer from wind-blown shocks of grain.
October brings the frosty dawn,
The still, warm noon, the cold, clear night,
When torpid insects make no sound,
And wild-fowl in their southward flight
Go by in hosts—and still the boy
And tired team gnaw round by round,
At weather-beaten stubble, band by band,
Until at last, to their great joy,
The winter's snow seals up the unploughed land.