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The Spike or Victoria University College Review September 1925

The Wanderer

The Wanderer.

Folks sing of the ease of the vagabond's lot,
Of the joys on the road when the sun is hot,
Shunning the human race.
But that doesn't tell of the rain and snow,
Of the howling winds that mockingly throw
Hail in the vagabond's face.

They prate of his winking camp-fire glow,
And envy his wanderings to and fro
Over the breezy downs.
But what do they know of aching feet,
Of slushing mud and the driving sleet,
And winter's gloomy frowns?

They write of his joyous spirit gay,
Of his merry laugh and his tuneful lay,
Working for no man's wage.
Little they rack of his lonely cares,
Of his failing strength and scanty hairs
Whitening now with age.

Oh! it's merry enough when the heart is young,
When songs come clear to a lifting tongue,
And youth is having its fill.
But how when the spring of life has gone,
When its summer draweth to evening song,
And winter lies over the hill?

—John Platten, Napier.