“Why did you leave the farm, my lad?
Why did you bolt and leave your dad?
Why did you beat it off to town
And turn your poor old father down?
Thinkers of platform, pulpit and press
Are wallowing in deep distress.
They seek to know the hidden cause
Why farmer boys desert their pas.”
“Well, stranger, since you’ve been so frank,
I’ll roll aside the hazy bank;
I left my dad, his farm, his plow,
Because my calf became his cow.
I left my dad, ’twas wrong, of course,
Because my colt became his horse.
I left my dad to sow and reap
Because my lamb became his sheep.
I dropped the hoe and stuck the fork
Because my pig became his pork.
The garden truck that I made grow
Was his to sell, but mine to hoe.
“It’s not the smoke in the atmosphere,
Nor the taste for life that brought me here.
Please tell the platform, pulpit, press,
No fear of toil nor love of dress
Is driving off the farmer lads;
It’s just the methods of their dads.”