Robert William Service (16 January 1874 - 11 September 1958 / Preston)
I had a friend, a breezy friend
I liked an awful lot;
And in his company no end
Of happiness I got.
We clicked in temper, taste and mood,
We gypsied side by side,--
And then, as no pal ever should,
He upped and died.
A score of years have since gone by,
Yet I bemoan him still;
He used to call me Bob and I
Was wont to call him Bill.
Oh how I wish that he were here,
How we would bravely walk
On heather hills to tavern cheer,
And talk and talk!
If as he always used to do,
He'd just drop in to tea,
To rest awhile and jest awhile,
How chirpy I would be!
Then he would puff his pipe of briar
And I my cigarette,
And we would yarn beside the fire,
And time forget.
Old Pal, come back a little while,
If just to let me say
How much I miss your jolly smile
Now you have gone away.
Ah, when in life's allotted span
We near our journey's end,
What greater treasure is there than
A Golden Friend!
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