There is an old mango tree
That stands alone and neglected
In a compound that I used to live
That captures very pleasant memories
Of my childhood days.
There’s a fresh memory that keeps on running
Through my weary mind tonite,
And I see a picture dancing
In the recessed cobwebbed corners of my mind;
It is a the picture of an old mango tree
With the tender light about it
That I loved in other days of my life.
And standing in a corner
Once again I seem to see
The green leaves and branches
Of an old mango tree.
You perhaps would call it ugly,
And I don’t know, but it may be so,
When you look the tree over
Unaided by beautiful memories that glow within my heart;
For its twigs are withered and crooked,
And its leaves are getting thin,
And the fruits of its bearing
Would not fill so large a basket
As they used to.
But I tell you,
When it comes to pleasing me,
It’s the dearest in the orchard,–
that old mango tree.
I would hide within its shelter,
Settling in some cosy corner of its shade,
Where no calls nor threats could stir me
From the pages of my mind’s diary.
Oh, that quiet, sweet seclusion
In its fulness passeth words!
It was deeper than the deepest
That my sanctuary will ever afford.
Why not?- the weaver birds and the robins,
They was hand in glove with me,
As they winked at me and sung
In that old mango tree.
It was on its sturdy branches
That in summers long ago
I would tie my swing and dangle
In contentment to and fro,
Idly dreaming childish fancies,
Building castles in the air,
Making of myself a hero
Of romances rich and rare,
Carved for princes and princesses.
I can shut my eyes and see it
Just as plain, as plain can be,
That same old swing dangling
To the old mango tree.
There’s a rustic seat beneath it
That I never can forget.
It’s the place where me and –my
Little sweetheart of a girl–used to sit,
When we would wander to the orchard
So no listening ones could hear
As I whispered sugared nonsense
Into her little willing ear,
How I will be the King,
And she the queen!
Life for me ain’t all been summer,
But I guess I’ve had my share
Of its flitting joys and pleasures,
And a sprinkling of its care.
Often, the skies have smiled upon me;
Then again i’ve seen them frown,
Though my load of living my life was never so heavy
That i longed to lay it down….
But when death does come calling,
This my last request shall be,–
That they ‘ll lay me
Beneath the old mango tree.
There,for many millions of years to come,
I will be playing my childish games once again
Without a single care in the world;
Long live,my old mango tree!