Robert W. Service
All a-begging me to leave you.
Day and night they're pleading, praying,
On the North-wind, on the West-wind,
from the peak and from the plain;
Night and day they never leave me --
do you know what they are saying?
"He was ours before you got him, and we want him once again."
Yes, they're wanting me, they're haunting me,
the awful lonely places;
They're whining and they're whimpering as if each had a soul;
They're calling from the wilderness,
the vast and God-like spaces,
The stark and sullen solitudes that sentinel the Pole.
They miss my little camp-fires, ever brightly, bravely gleaming
In the womb of desolation, where was never man before;
As comradeless I sought them, lion-hearted, loving, dreaming,
And they hailed me as a comrade, and they loved me evermore.
And now they're all a-crying, and it's no use me denying;
The spell of them is on me and I'm helpless as a child;
My heart is aching, aching, but I hear them, sleeping, waking;
It's the Lure of Little Voices, it's the mandate of the Wild.
I'm afraid to tell you, Honey, I can take no bitter leaving;
But softly in the sleep-time from your love I'll steal away.
Oh, it's cruel, dearie, cruel,
and it's God knows how I'm grieving;
But His loneliness is calling, and He knows I must obey.
©1907 Robert W. Service
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