Robert Kirkland Kernighan

(25 April 1854 – 3 November 1926 / Ontario)

The Tramp's Soliloquy - Poem by Robert Kirkland Kernighan

I 'm sitting in the cells, alone,

All broken down and sad ;
I hear the stifled curse and groan

Of drunken men and bad ;
I 'm hungry, thirsty, weak and sick

For hours my heart has ached ;
I 'm thinking of my mother, and

The buttered buns she baked.

I dream of home, and see the cows

Stand knee deep in the pond ;
The waving grain in yonder field

The tamaracs beyond ;
My sister blows the supper horn

The scented clover 's raked ;
I '11 hie me home and feast upon

The buns my mother baked.

I see the morning glory vines
Hang idle down, and droop

About the table where I eat
My supper on the stoop ;


Beyond the orchard stretches far,
With apple blossoms flaked ;

While sister Mary butters buns
My dear old mother baked.

I hear the twitter of the birds,

The bleating cry of sheep,
The call of Someone that I know ;

I 'm troubled in my sleep ;
I hear a groan and stupid cry

A dreaming drunk's awaked
I eat the bread of sorrow not

The buns my mother baked.


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Poem Submitted: Saturday, May 12, 2012



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