Hal (Harold Swain) Booth wrote many love poems to his wife Hylda. This poem he wrote in 1933 for their 11th wedding anniversary. Hal and Hylda fell in love as teenagers in the teens of the past century 1914 – 1917.
Then in 1917 Hal joined the army by lying about his age and served in WWI in Army Engineers Company B, 102nd Engineers Division. He returned and married his hometown sweetheart Hylda Squires on October 25, 1922. They had two children, Jane and Alan.
Alan, my dad, shared Grandpa’s poems with me after I wrote I was Lookin’ for My Father for him on Father’s Day 2005. Until that time, Dad was unaware of my poetry. And I was equally unaware of my grandfather’s. So Dad copied all the poems kept by my Grandmother and passed them along to me. Imagine my surprise.
by Hal Booth, 1933
There was a maid I knew when young.
Where’re she went ’round her I clung,
And danced her tune whene’re she sung
Our love that started
The war clouds came and gun shells burst,
And to the front among the first
I went, and there with hope I nursed
Our love that parted.
Home I marched with swelling chest,
To wed that maid and build a nest,
And now a girl and boy have blessed
Our love united.
Ten years and one we’re wed today,
And to the end I hope and pray,
With God’s pure love and heavenly ray
Our love be lighted.