Poetry of Kansas


by Don Mock (copyright 2004)

Some people said the boy was strange
      So secretive and shy.
He studied stones and animal bones
      And gazed into the sky.
He lived far out from town, this boy-,
      He knew no other child.
He did not miss what he'd never known;
      (Perhaps he was half wild.)
When cottonwoods made whispering sounds
      As cool night breezes blew,
While his parents slept, he often crept
      Outdoors to walk in dew.
He'd listen to the twittering birds
      And other sounds of night--
The coyote's howl, a distant owl
      And watch the stars grow bright.
When mornings came he'd milk the cow
      And take the sheep to graze,
And pick blackberries on the hill
      And help in many ways.
His favorite swimming hole he'd find
      When afternoons were hot,
And doze beside the bubbling creek--
      His was a happy lot!
But townsfolk talked about the boy
      And said it was not right,
And got an order from a judge
      And saved him from his plight.
(Manhattan: Soapweed Press. July 7, 2004)
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June 3, 2005 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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