Sodden and shivering, in mud and rain,
Half in the light that serves but to reveal
The blackness of an alley and the reel
Homeward of wretchedness in tattered train,
A boy stands crouched; big drops of drizzle drain
Slow from a rag that was a hat: no steel
Is harder than his look, that seems to feel
More than his small life's share of woe and pain.
The pack of papers, huddled by his arm,
Is pulp; and still he hugs the worthless lot....
A door flares open to let out a curse
And drag him in out of the night and storm.
Out of the night, you say? You know not what!
To blacker night, God knows! and hell, or worse!