A Child Asks
Please tell me teacher what its like
To watch a swallow in its flight
Or to see an eagle soar so high
It fades into a cloudless sky.
Please tell me about a country road
Along whose waysides wildflowers grow
Or can you tell me why lichens die
Just because we pollute the sky.
Describe to me a field of green
With crystal dew drops reflecting the sun's gleam
I've heard the elm tree was a majestic thing
That reached further skyward every spring.
What was a picnic? Were they easy to hold?
The parking lot's pavement is to hot or too cold
Was there ever a place a child could look
Into the bottom of a clear mountain brook?
Did ever wild animals live, not in a cage
Please teacher tell me of that other age
Tell me about the love affair
Between the butterflies,
the flowers and clean fresh air.
You'll have to tell me, teacher
Because I can't see
None of these things
are left for me.
by Clifford A. Phaneuf