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The Home-Coming



My boy's come back; he's here at last;
He came home on a special train.
My longing and my ache are past,
My only son is back again.
He's home with music, flags and flowers;
With peace and joy my heart's abrim;
He got here in the morning hours
With half the town to welcome him.

To hush my grief, night after night,
How I have digged my pillow deep,
And it would be the morning light
Before I sobbed myself to sleep.
And how I used to stare and stare
Across the harbour's yeasty foam,
Thinking he's fighting far out there . . .
But now with bells my boy's come home.

There's Mrs. Burke, she has her Ted,
But less the sight of his two eyes;
And Mrs. Smith - you know her Fred -
They took his legs off at the thighs.
How can these women happy be,
For all their bravery of talk,
One with a son who cannot see,
One with a boy who'll never walk.

I should be happier than they;
My lad came back without a scar,
And all the folks are proud they say,
To greet their hero of the war.
So in the gentle eventide
I'll give God thanks my Bert's come home. . . .
As peacefully I sit beside
His tiny mound of new-turned loam.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

1:09 min read
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Robert William Service

Robert William Service was a poet and writer sometimes referred to as the Bard of the Yukon He is best-known for his writings on the Canadian North including the poems The Shooting of Dan McGrew The Law of the Yukon and The Cremation of Sam McGee His writing was so expressive that his readers took him for a hard-bitten old Klondike prospector not the later-arriving bank clerk he actually was Robert William Service was born 16 January 1874 in Preston England but also lived in Scotland before emigrating to Canada in 1894 Service went to the Yukon Territory in 1904 as a bank clerk and became famous for his poems about this region which are mostly in his first two books of poetry He wrote quite a bit of prose as well and worked as a reporter for some time but those writings are not nearly as well known as his poems He travelled around the world quite a bit and narrowly escaped from France at the beginning of the Second World War during which time he lived in Hollywood California He died 11 September 1958 in France Incidentally he played himself in a movie called The Spoilers starring John Wayne and Marlene Dietrich more…

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    "The Home-Coming" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 17 Jan. 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/32556/the-home-coming>.

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