"Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendia was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice."
Gabriel Garcia Marquez: "One Hundred Years of Solitude"
This charming little poem, which always brings a smile to my face, was published in 1907 and it’s a wonderful way to introduce a child to poetry. Even a five-year-old can learn to recite it.
Noyes was a serious old-school poet and this is not at all typical of his output but it is probably his most-quoted work. Adults and children have laughed together when hearing it for more than a hundred years.
For me it paints a clear picture of middle-class life in early twentieth century England, (late Victorian in essence). I don’t think too many families would have owned a camera in 1907 and they also employed a gardener.
Not many words have been used, to be sure, but what a powerful image the poet conjures up!