(15 August 1858 – 4 May 1924 / Kennington / Surrey / England)

The Prodigal Son

COME home, come home, for your eyes are sore
With the glare of the noonday sun,
And nothing looks as it did before,
And the best of the day is done.

You have played your match, and ridden your race,
You have fought in your fight--and lost;
And life has set its claws in your face,
And you know what the scratches cost.

Out there the world is cruel and loud,
It strikes at the beaten man;
Come out of the press of the stranger crowd
To the place where your life began.

The best robe lies in the cedar chest,
And your father's ring is here;
You have known the worst, come home to the best--
You will pay for it, never fear!

In every kiss of your sister's mouth,
In each tear from your mother's eyes,
You will pay the price of the days in the South
Where the far-off country lies.

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