A Boy's Trials

When I was but a little lad
One thing I could not bear,
It was to stand at mother's knee
And have her comb my hair.

They didn't keep boys' hair as short
As it's kept now-a-days,
And mine was always tangled up
In twenty different ways.

I'd twist my mouth and grit my teeth,
And say it wasn't fair-
It was a trial, and no mistake,
When mother combed my hair.

She'd brush and brush each stubborn curl
That grew upon my pate,
And with her scissors nip and clip
To make the edges straight.

Then smooth it down until it shone,
While I would grin and bear,
And feel a martyr through and through,
When mother combed my hair.

She'd take my round chin in her hand
And hold it there the while
She made the parting carefully,
Then tell me with a smile:

'Don't push your cap down on your curls
And spoil my work and care;
He is a pretty little lad
When mother combs his hair.'

I'd hurry out and rumple up
That mop of hair so thick-
A vandal, I, for she had worked
So hard to make it slick-

And wish I were a grown-up man
So nobody would dare
To put a washrag in my ears,
Or comb my tangled hair.

Heigho! now that I'm bald and gray,
Methinks I would be glad
To have her smooth my brow and cheeks,
And whisper, 'Mother's lad!'

A longing for the care-free days
Doth take me unaware;
To stand, a boy, at mother's knee
And have her comb my hair.

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"A Boy's Trials" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 17 Jul 2019. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/43050/a-boy's-trials>.

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