Edgar Albert Guest

20 August 1881 - 5 August 1959 / Birmingham / England

Green Apple Time

Green apple time! an', Oh, the joy
Once more to be a healthy boy,
Casting a longin' greedy eye
At every tree he passes by!
Riskin' the direst consequence
To sneak inside a neighbor's fence
An' shake from many a loaded limb
The fruit that seems so near to him
Gosh! but once more I'd like to be
The boy I was in eighty-three.

Here I am sittin' with my pipe,
Waitin' for apples to get ripe;
Waitin' until the friendly sun
Has bronzed 'em all an' says they're done;
Not darin' any more to climb
An' pick a few afore their time.
No legs to run, no teeth to chew
The way that healthy youngsters do;
Jus' old enough to sit an' wait
An' pick my apple from a plate.

Plate apples ain't to be compared
With those you've ventured for an' dared.
It's winnin' 'em from branches high,
Or nippin' 'em when no one's by,
Or findin' 'em the time you feel
You really need another meal,
Or comin' unexpectedly
Upon a farmer's loaded tree
An' grabbin' all that you can eat,
That goes to make an apple sweet.

Green apple time! Go to it, boy,
An' cram yourself right full o' joy;
Watch for the farmer's dog an' run;
There'll come a time it can't be done.
There'll come a day you can't digest
The fruit you've stuffed into your vest,
Nor climb, but you'll sit down like me
An' watch 'em ripening on the tree,
An' jus' like me you'll have to wait
To pick your apples from a plate.
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