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The Broader Horizon

From the Rock Island Argus, December 12, 1913. By Henry Howland.

He left the little town because he thought
    He needed a horizon that was wider;
He fancied he had talent and he sought
    The city as a suitable provider
Of opportunities such as he dared
    To think were all he needed to win glory;
The little town, he solemnly declared,
    Was such an old and oft-repeated story.

He sought the city with its rush and roar,
    And with its glare and glitter and its splendor;
He thought about the little town no more,
    Forgot the friendships that had been so tender;
He found his opportunity inside
    A cage where day by day he labored grimly,
Where sweet, fresh air and sunlight were denied,
    Where hope loomed up sometimes—but very dimly.

His home consisted of four little rooms,
    Within a building that was far from peerless.
They were as dark as are Egyptian tombs,
    And just about as stuffy and as cheerless;
Day after day he went the same small round,
    Nor ever found new scenes to rest his eyes on,
But, sadly pinched, he fancied he had found
    Though high walls shut him in, a broad horizon.

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