The American
I met a man
By the canal bank once,
Out at the Lock in Ticknevin.
He wore his great coat in July,
His only coat,
His Gospel coat;
The same for winter snow,
For he had no other.

"You're from New York"!
To a stranger there, he said,
Your first time here!
My mother's brother went there long ago,
Another to Montana.
When it's quiet here," he said
You can here the birds singing.
You'd think you were in heaven."
He had a single tooth
Of dubious use;
He watched the waters move reflectively,
And said "It's Heaven."

Had their parents traded places long ago,
When some were forced to go,
He would have a wardrobe now,
A signet ring,
For education;
But where the young swans glide
He would not know
The birds singing.