wondered just who this little four-year-old thought he was.
He was saying he was running away from home.
“Why?” I asked, but he just said, “Cause.”
And I said, “You know I’ll miss you when you’re gone.

Would you like me to help you pack?”
He had to stop and think about that.
“No. I’m running away and I won’t be back.”
“Well, in that case, don’t forget your hat!”

I turned and left the room and let him go about his chore.
My little man was thinking he was all grown up.
Soon he was dragging a suitcase, too big and too heavy, across the floor.
“It’s cold out.” I said, “I made you hot cocoa in a cup.”
“No, thank you. I’m leaving now.” He languished in a pleading tone.
“Take care of yourself, son. I’ll miss you a lot.”
He left dragging his suitcase with resolve: He looked so lost and alone.
At the bottom of the hill he stood on the corner deep in thought.

After a while I heard a tiny knock and I answered the door with a smile.
My son was standing there, his eyes swimming with tears.
“It’s too cold to run away right now.” He said, “Can I wait for a while?”
“Certainly!” I replied through brimming eyes, “I hope you’ll wait for years!”


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