Poetry of Kansas

Getting Back to the Farm

The cost of beef and bacon is getting mighty high,
The price of eggs and butter is soaring to the sky,
Our milk is so expensive that we only take a gill
And lest we drink too much at once we suck it
        through a quill.
The cost of living is a theme that claims attention
It even seems to have the bulge on Europe's family
Our thoughts are turned from gas bombs and dirig-
        ible balloons
While we ponder on the prospect of getting back to
The men who guide the ship of state around the
        shoals and wrecks
Are talking on the subject of causes and effects.
They seek to find the trouble and the remedy apply
That will keep the price of eatings from going up
        so high.
They have juggled with statistics and performed a
        little sum
And they tell us that production is completely on the
That the merchant and the banker and the printer
        and the clerk
Must get out in the country and procure a job of
They say the population now is drifting into town
And there must be some reaction to keep the prices
Yea, from the hill and housetop they are spreading
        the alarm,
That the way to save the nation is to get back to the
Then farewell to the city with its glamor and its
I am going to seek some rural scene and lead the
        simple life.
I want to be a farmer and with the farmer stand,
With hayseed in my whiskers and a pitchfork in my
I will skiddoo back to nature and I'll buy a span of
A husking peg and hayrake and other farming tools.
I will sow my fields in cabbage and when I thresh it
I will wreck the combination that controls our sour
I will plant the tiny hayseed and raise a crop of hay
Perhaps I'll keep a hen that lays a dozen eggs a day;
I'll wipe the sweat from off my brow and bare my
        strong right arm
And you'll see the prices tumble when I get back
to the farm.

Verdigris Valley Verse
Albert Stroud
(Coffeyville, Kansas: The Journal Press. 1917)
Pages 74-75

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March 8, 2003 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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