Full well I know that wishing never yet has brought
The things that seem to us would satisfy the heart,
And that anticipated pleasure, when at last 'tis caught,
Has naught but transitory solace to impart;
And yet, somehow, I've ever felt and thought
A joy there is that never can depart--
(As long as we are capable of feeling--wishing)--
And that's to leave dull care behind, and--go a-fishing!
Some dream of wealth--of place--of fame--
And fleeting shadows vainly they pursue;
And some have sighed to win a deathless name
Where fields of carnage corpses thickly strew,
And shrieks of agony are heard 'mid smoke and flame;
But these are dizzy heights attained by few;
So, when Dame Fortune is her favors dishing,
I hope that I'll get mine in ample time to--go a-fishing!
Oh, was there ever any sweeter dream,
Or music with a tone that's more entrancing,
Than just to wander where some mountain stream
Is o'er the rocks and polished pebbles dancing?
And nothing short of heaven itself, I ween,
Is like the moment when, his scales all glancing,
You see the happy consummation of your wishing,
And catch the very fish for which you have been fishing!