R. 1, Six Lakes, Michigan

My steam engine is silent
Asleep in the shed.
 And sweetly I dream of her,
while snug in my bed.
 Bad weather can’t touch her,
like snow, rain and sleet.
 Little birds can’t roost on her,
and sing their tweet tweet.
 We cleaned out the boiler,
Also the flues.
 The smoke box, firebox,
and ashpit too.
 I’m sure she’ll be ready
when spring comes again,
 to steam up and whistle,
to delight the hearts of threshermen.
With water in her boiler,
and smoke from her stack.
 She’ll herald the news,
the threshermen’s back.
 The bundles go tumbling
 in the feeders hungry maw,
 and out of the blower comes
the bright fluffy straw.
The grain from the bagger,
is dry, clean and sweet.
 No shrunken kernels or moisture,
the farmer to cheat.
At meal time when,
the thresher is still,
 To the house the men go,
with a right good will.
 Amidst lively banter,
they scrub in the tub.
 Then grab for a towel,
to make the last rub.

The tables are laden with
all kinds of eats,
no king ever had a more sumptous feast.

Smiling cooks filled coffee cups again and again,
I’m sure they enjoyed it as much as the men.
To combine may save,
the housewife some work.
But they sure taught the farmer,
a mean way to shirk.
They scatter the straw,
All over the field.
And the grain that they waste,
helps lower the yield.
I’m sure the lone farmer,
with his combine so new,
must sometimes yearn for the friendly comradship
of the old time threshing crew.
The gas tractor is efficient,
no one will deny.
But who would ever love one,
in the sweet by and by?
They are noisy in the morning,
they are noisy at night.
No matter what you do to one
they never smell just right.
Now a steamer is different,
in so many ways.
They make old men boys again
when with them they play.
They are chummy and warm,
Smell of hot oil, smoke and steam.
And just the cat’s whiskers,
for a thresherman’s dream.
I’ll bring this to a close,
as best I can.
I’m sure that by now you will know
I’m a steam engine thresherman.

Farm Collector Magazine
Farm Collector Magazine
Dedicated to the Preservation of Vintage Farm Equipment