As I was sitting on the gate,
A little man walked past
“I cannot stop, I’m far too late,”
Hesaid, and went on fast.
He wore round glasses made of wire
And carried a knobbly stick.
I ran after him to inquire
What made him go so quick
“I’m going to town to see what’s what
And why it is just so,
I want to ask why not,
It’s something I must know.”
“But,” said I, and scratched my head,
“Why must you rush like this?
If you walked slow instead
Is there something that you’d miss?”
The little man then looked quite strange
“Of course,young boy, I have to hurry.
Otherwise what’s what might change,
Which is my greatest worry.”
“But what is this what of great concern
That makes you go so fast?
What is this thing you want to learn?
I’d like to know at last.”
“If I knew,” he said to me, in an irritated shoutWellthen I wouldn’t have to go.
I wouldn’t have to find it out
Because then I would already know.”
And so I let him rush along
And strolled back to the gate
And it wasn’t for so very long
I had to sit and wait.
The little man quite soon came back
Along our little road.
He was carrying a large brown sack
and it looked a heavy load.
“What is it that you have in there,”
I asked him to explain
“You’re carrying with so much care,
And seemingly much strain?”
“It’s what is what,” the small man beamed
“But I cannot stop to chat.
It’s everything I’ve ever dreamed,”
Hesaid, and tipped his hat.
I followed him along once more
At a slightly slower stride
“But in the sack,” I did implore
“What have you got inside?”
“Well that,” he said and paused a bit
“I really cannot say;
I’m afraid that if I open it,
What’s what will get away.”