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Wish You Was Here

From The Sun, August 3, 1913.

Got a card from Steve this mornin’, doggone his trav’lin’ skin
He’s up around Niag’ry Falls a-writin’ home agin.
Seems like that boy’s one glory is to wander full an’ free
An’ furder off he gits, I gosh, th’ more he writes to me.
He sends these picture postal cards, with photos showin’ that
The world is allus beautif’lest where you ain’t livin’ at.
His messages reads all the same, in letters large an’ clear
He writes from Maine er Kankakee an’ says—
    “Wish you was here!”

Nobody ever seems to know just when he’ll go er where.
We git his destination from the card that says he’s there.
An’ he ain’t more than settled down to loaf a day er two
Till he gits thinkin’ up the names of ever’one he knew.
An’ then with ever’ doggone cent he possibly kin spare
He buys the Unitary church, the Depot an’ the Square.
He buys ‘bout ever’thing they is in Bath er Belvidere,
Then mails the whole blame business home an’ says—
    “Wish you was here!”

I guess he’s at Niag’ry now; he was last time he wrote,
But that don’t prove conclusively he ain’t in Terry Hote.
He may be down in Panama er snoopin’ round in Nome.
Nobody knows just where he’s at—except he ain’t at home!
I guess we’d never hear from him fer months er mebbe years
If some kind soul had not devised these picture souvenirs.
Yes, I expect if Steve would die he’d rise up from his bier
To pen a card to all his friends an’ say—
    “Wish you was here!”