A COMICS POEM;
Extrapolated from Frank Leavitt’s original 3-verse poem (1885):
I drew this comic using Frank Leavitt’s poem as my starting point.
I added some details from other sources (see below) & then made up a couple of my own lines to fill out the story.
I have found that the poem actually fits quite well into the old fiddle tune “Forked Deer” [Henry Reed, LOC.gov]. The tune dates to at least a little before the time of the Willey slide. (These verses fit the A part perfectly; & the B part gives you some time to ponder mortality & fate.)
Here are a couple source links for the text:
- Folk artist & poet Frank Leavitt @ WhiteMountainHistory.org >>
- Leavitt’s original poem, “The Willey Slide” (included in this 1888 print):
I use Leavitt’s 1885 version (where the mudslide “hit” the barn, instead of “took” it — “hit” is more clear for a modern audience).
- More about Leavitt’s poetry: “Franklin Leavitt’s White Mountains Verse” by David Tatham >>
- I’ve also drawn some details from Benjamin Willey’s account in Incidents in White Mountain History (1856).
28 August 1826