The wizard looked her squarely,
And bent one eye, just so:
A crooked bit of nuance
Just short of cringe and moan.
"Why everyone so happy?
Tell me, just what's it worth
To give what others want to have?
What rights have they by birth?"
He turned and waved his arm
At people as they passed.
He pointed at them, said in turn,
"What emotion that could last?"
He pointed to a poor, poor man,
Who puttered in the street,
"This man could use a home, I bet,
some warmth for head and feet."
He pointed to a man dressed up
And down, right to the nines
Who went from door to sorry door
And gathered fees and fines.
"But who will please this landlord,
Whose happiness resides,
In just how much of rent is due.
That you can't deny.
"How heavy does the burden be
To keep a place to stay?
How light will be the load they bear,
Placed in the street, next day.
"Perhaps some coin can satisfy
The want of greedy men,
but what can fill the emptiness
of sadness, now and then.
"Some people just aren't happy;
It's hard to say just why,
When all their dreams are yet fulfilled,
They still find cause to cry.
"Dear girl, you do amuse me:
This happiness delights.
I fear you ask for far too much,
My sense is scared of heights."
He looked from left, and then to right,
And licked his lips but once,
"You know, it's hard to fill that wish,
But we can start with us.
"Since you have made your happy wish,
And it relies on ALL.
I'll tell my wish for happiness,
My request is fairly small.
"I have but one need, this time 'round,
Just a single token,
Something young, may be right here:
Perhaps in your possession.
"I ask for this and nothing more,
I'm a simple man you see.
And ever since I lost my home,
All I seek's a tree.
"Oh, not just any tree, mind you,
It has to be just right.
The tree I seek has got a mark,
But nothing like a blight.
"A thorn, perhaps, a common thing,
Grown in would do the trick.
Would soften me to keep a tree,
and free to look on it.
"Such a thing would tell my soul
That beauty does exist:
Be marred or mauled or made less than
where perfectness had missed."