The Legend of Jenny’s Run

Our last poem in celebration of Poetry month was published in the Port Tobacco Times on September 27, 1860.

The Legend of Jenny’s Run*

In a far off valley deep,
Where the rushing wasters sweep,
And the snow white lilies peep
From their beds of green,

Wandering at the close of day,
Like some timid woodland fay,
O’er the tufts of new mown hay,
A maiden fair was seen.

Eyes she had of deepest blue
Vying e’en with Heaven’s hue,
Telling of the heart so true
That warmly beat below;

But upon her sweet young face
In which centered every grace,
One might plainly see the trace
Of joy destroying woe.

For a moment she stood on the soft moist sod,
But scorning to kiss affliction’s rod,
She silently prayed to the merciful God
And plunged into the stream.

And as her pure spirit fled to its rest,
And her body lay still on the stream’s cold breast,
The setting sun behind the hills in the west
Concealed his last lingering beam.

And when that sun with power and might
Again chased from the sky the dark shadows of
night
And filled the world with his golden light
There was dole at F____ly Hall:

In many an eye there gleamed a tear,
And many a heart was and drear,
For in “the beautiful valley” that maiden fair
Was honored and loved by all.

From the sparkling waves her form they took,
From her silken hair the water pearls shook,
And they marvelled not at her lifelike look
For she “trod where Christ hath trod.”

Above her head they have reared no tomb,
But around her grave the wild flowers bloom,
And her only requiem is the pheasant’s boom,
Her glory the forgiveness of God.

And now when the weary traveler craves
The name of the stream in whose limpid waves
His heated brow he joyfully laves
Scorched by the summer’s sun,

The dusky workman with hat in hand
And eyes uplift to the spirit land,
With quivering lip will reverently stand
And answer, ‘tis Jenny’s Run.’

Iwan Ullin.

*A small stream on the road from Port Tobacco to Washington, about two miles from the former place.

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