The Lake of the Thousand Isles

In honor of Discovery Day, we present this work by one of Canada’s greatest immigrant poets.

Evan MacColl
Canadian
1808 – 1898

 

Though Missouri’stide may majestic glide,
There’s a curse on the soil it laves;
The Ohio, too, may be fair, but who
Would sojourn in the land of slaves?
Be my prouder lot a Canadian cot
And the bread of a freeman’s toils;
Then hurrah for the land of the forests grand,
And the Lake of the Thousand Isles!
I would seek no wealth, at the cost of health,
‘Mid the city’s din and strife;
More I love the grace of fair nature’s face,
And the calm of a woodland life;
I would shun the road by ambition trod,
And the lore which the heart defiles;–
Then hurrah for the land of the forests grand,
And the Lake of the Thousand Isles!

O away, away! I would gladly stray
Where the freedom I love is found;
Where the pine and oak by the woodman’s stroke
Are disturbed in their ancient bound;
Where the gladsome swain reaps the golden grain,
And the trout from the stream beguiles;
Then hurrah for the land of the forests grand,
And the Lake of the Thousand Isles.

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