Poetry of Kansas

On the Prairie.

Out on the prairie___a shrieking storm!
How the pitiless cold, driven from homes and firesides warm,
In its terrible hold,
Here grapples and grips with strength untold!
Miles and miles, and nothing in sight,
Only sweeps of snow___
That under the dust of the gathering night,
Now dimmer grow___breasting the winds that fiercely blow.
Not a friendly light not a sheltering tree,
On the prairie's breast,
And my failing feet shrink under me!
I am heavy___oppressed
With a drowsy weight; I must stop and rest.
No, I can not go on! Here I lay me down,
While the storm sweeps by;
Press on, if you can, to the sheltering town;
In peace ]et me lie.
I am not cold . . . only sleepy . . . good-by.

__Ellen P. Allerton.

Walls of Corn and Other Poems
Ellen P. Allerton
(Hiawatha, KS: Harrington Printing Company. 1894)
Page 191

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November 1, 2002 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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