Why Can’t the Kids Be Always Young? [poem by “Dryblower” Murphy, 1926]

[Editor: This poem by “Dryblower” Murphy was published in Dryblower’s Verses (1926).]

Why Can’t the Kids Be Always Young?

Why can’t the kids be always young?
Why must they grow from babyhood
To hear life’s sordid stanzas sung;
By souls too clearly understood?
Why must we cut the sunny curls
And place the toddler’s shoes away?
Why must they grow from boys and girls
To men and women, gaunt and grey?
Why should the toys aside be flung?
Why can’t the kids be always young?

There’s always room on mummy’s lap,
There’s always room in daddy’s arms,
For some wee frail or homely chap
Whose mischief moods are chubby charms.
He may be pretty or be plain,
Or fragile as the hot-house flow’rs,
But he came down the Angel Lane;
God sent him to us, and he’s ours!
And so we’ve said, and so we’ve sung,
Why can’t the kids be always young?

Why should they know the wrath of war,
The mowing down of myriad men,
The rifle’s rap, the cannon’s roar?
Why should a care be in their ken?
Why can’t some act of God on high
Keep them in sweet, unbattled bliss,
Where they shall hear no sorrowed sigh
In Dad and Mummy’s good-night kiss?
Hearing the peace bells always rung,
Why can’t the kids be always young?



Source:
Edwin Greenslade Murphy, Dryblower’s Verses, Perth, W.A.: E. G. Murphy, 1926, page 7

Previously published (with some differences) in:
The Sunday Times (Perth, WA), 28 April 1918, p. 6

Editor’s notes:
ken = knowledge, perception, understanding (also means “know”, as particularly used in Scotland)

[Editor: Inserted a comma after “men and women”; inserted a full stop after “chubby charms”.]

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