Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

The Call - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

There's an office back in London, and the dusty sunlight falls
With its swarms of dancing motes across the floor,
On the piles of books and papers and the drab distempered walls
And the bowlers on their pegs behind the door.
There's an office-stool in London where a fellow used to sit
(But the chap that used to sit there's oversea);
There's a job they're keeping open till that fellow's done his bit,
And the one that job is waiting for is - Me!

And it may be black ingratitude, but oh, Good Lord, I know
I could never stick the office-life again,
With the coats and cuffs and collars and the long hours crawling slow
And the quick lunch and the same old morning train;
I have looked on Life and Death and seen the naked soul of man,
And the heart of things is other than it seemed,
And the world is somehow larger than the good old office plan,
And the ways of earth are wider than I dreamed.

There's a chap in the Canadians - a clinking good chap too -
And he hails from back o' nowhere in B. C.,
And he says it's sure some country, and I wonder if it's true,
And I rather fancy that's the place for me.
There's a trail I mean to follow and a camp I mean to share
Out beyond the survey, up in Cassiar,
For there's something wakened in me that I never knew was there,
And they'll have to find some other chap to fill that vacant chair
When the boys come marching homeward from the war.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

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