|Little-Boy-That-Used-To-Be, wherever did you wander?
I have looked for you in vain where the children play.
Did you stray away across the blue hills over yonder?___
In some half forgotten path, did you lose the way?
Shall I miss you always as I'm missing you today?
Little hands that clung to me, little feet that pattered
Close beside me all the day, everywhere I went;
Little voice so piping sweet___once it never mattered
Whether long or short the day, how my time was spent.
So I had you near to me, I was well content.
Little head that burrowed down hard against my shoulder
Till at last its drowsy weight fell upon my breast,
How I miss you here of nights, lonelier and older
Since you went away and left half my love unguessed!
Where you wandered, did you find any safer rest?
Little-Boy-That-Used-To-Be, wherever did you wander?
I shall look for you no more where the children play.
But of this big bonny man I can be no fonder
Than of that wee one that went far and far away:
Leaving me the comfort that his manhood is today.
The Call of Kansas and Other Poems
Esther M. (Clark) Hill
(Cedar Rapids: Torch Press. __)