Ad resurrects a long-forgotten poem


Amelia Barr

The memory of Amelia Barr, who wrote more than 25 popular novels while living in Cornwall-on-Hudson between 1885 and 1912, got a recent boost when one of her poems was turned into a video shown at college bowl games.

Barr moved into Cherry Croft at the corner of Maple and Mountain Road at the age of 53, early in her writing career. By the time she moved away at age 80, she had written poems, pieces for newspapers and magazines, and historical novels that were so popular that she bragged in her autobiography that “I not infrequently have letters directed to me ‘Cherry Croft, New York, United States of America,’ and they come direct to me without question or delay.”

But while Cherry Croft still stands, and is even listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Barr’s works had fallen out of fashion, or were falling out of fashion, until The Martin Agency ran across a poem by Barr extolling the work of farmers and brought it to the attention of a client, the agricultural co-operative Land O’Lakes, which asked for a video to be made. The video, featuring a woman reciting Barr’s “The Farmer” while scenes of farm life fill the screen, was so well received that it was run during the Cotton, Orange, and Sugar Bowls among others. The video is on You Tube.
Contributed by
John Moran

The Farmer
The king may rule o’er land and sea,
The lord may live right royally,
The soldier rides in pomp and pride,
The sailor roams o’er ocean wide;
But this or that, whate’er befall,
The farmer he must feed them all.

The writer thinks, the poet sings,
The craftsmen fashion wondrous things,
The doctor heals, the lawyer pleads,
The miner follows the precious leads;
But this or that, whate’er befall,
The farmer he must feed them all.

The merchant he may buy and sell,
The teacher do his duty well;
But men may toil through busy days,
Or men may stroll through pleasant ways;
From king to beggar, whate’er befall,
The farmer he must feed them all.

The farmer’s trade is one of worth;
He’s partner with the sky and earth,
He’s partner with the sun and rain,
And no man loses for his gain;
And men may rise, or men may fall,
But the farmer he must feed them all.

God bless the man who sows the wheat,
Who finds us milk and fruit and meat;
May his purse be heavy, his heart be light,
His cattle and corn and all go right;
God bless the seeds his hands let fall,
For the farmer he must feed us all.


Editorial Staff