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Poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox


The Traveled Man


Sometimes I wish the railroads all were torn out,
  The ships all sunk among the coral strands.
I am so very weary, yea so worn out,
  With tales of those who visit foreign lands.

When asked to dine, to meet these traveled people,
  My soup seems brewed from cemetery bones.
The fish grows cold on some cathedral steeple,
  I miss two courses while I stare at thrones.

IТm forced to leave my salad quite untasted,
  Some musty, moldy temple to explore.
The ices, fruit and coffee all are wasted
  While into realms of ancient art I soar.

IТd rather take my chance of life and reason,
  If in a den of roaring lions hurled
Than for a single year, ay, for one season,
  To dwell with folks whoТd traveled round the world.

So patronizing are they, so oppressive,
  With pity for the ones who stay at home,
So mighty is their knowledge so aggressive,
  I ofttimes wish they had not ceased to roam.

They loathe the new, they quite detest the present;
  They revel in a pre-Columbian morn;
Just dare to say America is pleasant,
  And die beneath the glances of their scorn.

They are increasing at a rate alarming,
  Go where I will, the traveled man is there.
And now I think that rustic wholly charming
  Who has not strayed beyond his meadows fair.



Ella Wheeler Wilcox


Ella Wheeler Wilcox's other poems:
  1. The Birth of the Opal
  2. At Eleusis
  3. But a Dream
  4. The Call (All wantonly in hours of joy)
  5. The Awakening (I love the tropics, where sun and rain)


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