Out on the prairie so wide

The school buses wending their way

From the towns they travel

For miles on the gravel

An hour before it is day.

And the winter wind blows

Cross the corn stubble rows

Where the dirt has turned the snow gray.

And the children walk down to the road

From the farmhouses' warm kitchen glow,

Stand waiting and yearning

To see the bus turning

And the sweep of the headlights' glow.

And they climb up inside

And away they all ride

Past the farms and the fields full of snow.

And they think about math as they go

And the chemistry of atmosphere

And unequal equations

And French conjugations

And the sonnets of William Shakespeare

And then up the drive

At the school they arrive

On the darkest day of the year.

And in due course they will fly

Away, young women and men

With mixed emotions

Cross mountains and oceans

And become what we could not have been.

We will tenderly kiss them

Goodbye and miss them

And never will see them again.