So Many Years Ago

From our March 2012 issue

By Art Klassen – Newton Siding, Man.

To those of you raised on a farm so many years ago
Will remember that things then were done a lot more slow.
There was more time, daylight saving was all year with us
Life was daily lived and toiled, no use making too much fuss.
To make life easier the farmer built this sled, it was called a stone boat
With it he could haul those stones, it would even float.

Some were crudely built while others crafted them with care,
Usually four feet wide by eight feet long and two runners as a pair.
With planks as floor and a two foot front with tongue and yoke,
This masterpiece of a unique design was to most not a joke.
Its many uses on the farm one could not easily compare,
To make fun of this important item on the farm is not fair.

Hauling stones off the field was meant to be its original use
But many more jobs were found that it could easily do.
Some were made for horses two, the tongue between them made it secure,
With the one horse set up usually you would haul out the manure.
This way you could spread on the go, the horse soon knew the way
Yes, on the farm that stoneboat was the first and last thing to stay.

John Deere did not this equipment sell, it was always homemade,
Sometimes with poor roads, with it kids were to school taken
Or in your Sunday best you might be forced to ride partway from a church meeting
This sled carried no insurance yet it travelled on any public roads.
It needed no polishing, just the odd washing, it carried any kind of loads.
To the farm it was most important, we could not be without it.

No matter how poor or rich the farm, yet it always had this all-purpose sled,
Summer or winter it was used, it never had to be fed.
Today many modern gas machines take its place,
But if you honestly look old farmers in their face
They will tell you of the good old stone boat days which are gone by
And how they will not need it when they are up in the sky.