A YOUTH sat down on a wayside stone,
A pack on his back and a staff at his knee.
He whistled a tune which he called his own,
'It's a fine new tune, that tune!' said he.

In his pack he carried a crust of bread,
And he drank from his hands at a brook hard by;
'Spring water is wonderful cool,' he said,
'And wonderful soft is the summer sky!'

He looked to the hill which his steps had passed,
He looked to the slope where a brooklet purled,
He looked to the distance blue and vast
And 'Ah,' cried he, 'what a fine, wide world!'

The youth passed on down the winding track
That led to the beckoning distance dim,
And though he carried but staff and pack,
The world and its giving belonged to him.

More verses by Isabel Ecclestone Mackay