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When You Come Home

Katharine Tynan 1861 (Ireland) – 1931



All will be right when you come home, dear lad,
But oh, 'tis long of coming that you are!
Everything's wrong with all the world and sad;
There are so many hurt in this long war,
So many missing, who will never come,
Lying out in the rain and in the cold.
I shall forget it all when you come home,
I shall forget the lonesome things they told.

There's something, something sad, that troubles me.
Beats like the rain upon my frightened heart;
A tale about a girl, the thing might be,
Whispered in corners, secret and apart
How he was killed and how she never knew
Because God put a small cloud on her mind,
And how she waited the black winters through
And the wet summers; surely God was kind!

I took a daisy from the garden-bed
And plucked the petals, one by one, to tell
When I and my true lover should be wed,
This year: Next year: Never: the petals fell
And stopped at Never. But it could not guess,
The foolish daisy, what true love I had.
I turned from daisies and I plucked heartsease
To rest my heart on and be safe and glad.

Everything's wrong, Love, since you went away,
Such a queer world when all the boys are gone,
And there is no one left but old and grey,
Women and children, frightened and alone.
Sometimes the tale is crying at my heart
Of that poor girl. Maybe 'twas but a dream.
When you come home the shadows will depart,
The lonesome dreams die off in morning gleam.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Katharine Tynan

Katharine Tynan was an Irish-born writer, known mainly for her novels and poetry. more…

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