In this great city that has no end;
Yet days go by and weeks rush on,
And before I know it, a year is gone,
And I never see my old friend’s face.
For life is a swift and terrible race.
He knows I like him just as well
As in the days when I rang his bell
And he rang mine. We were younger then,
And now we are busy, tired men:
Tired of playing a foolish game,
Tired of trying to make a name.
“Tomorrow,” I say, “I will call on Jim
Just to show that I am thinking of him.”
But tomorrow comes-and tomorrow goes,
And the distance between us grows and grows.
Around the corner!-yet miles away . . .
“Here’s a telegram, Sir,” . . . “Jim died today.”
And that’s what we get and deserve in the end:
Around the corner, a vanished friend.
-Charles Hanson Towne
[Robert J. Morgan, Nelson’s Complete book of Stories, Illustrations and Quotes (Thomas Nelson: Nashville, 2000), 324.]
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