Ballad of the Wonderer <Click on the link
This is the first composition I ever had published (and one of only a few). I wrote this in the early 60s (1962, if I remember correctly) for an English comp class taught by the late Sister Mary Faith Schuster, English professor and Dean of Donnelly College.
She encouraged me to submit it to the school magazine, “The Athenian”, for publication.
I did and the magazine published it. Later, I was asked to read it at an open mic night at the school-sponsored coffee house.
The title was the creation of one of the Athenian student editors, a takeoff of the folk song “Ballad of the Wanderer” which was popular in the folk-crazed 60s.
When I recited the poem on open mic night, I actually used another folk song, recorded by the Chad Mitchell Trio (with whom the late John Denver got his start) entitled “I Can’t Help But Wonder Where I’m Bound” as background. A friend monitored the stereo and when I neared the ending lines, turned up the volume so that as I walked away from the mic, the final lyrics “And I can’t help but wonder where I’m bound, where I’m bound” echoed ’round the coffee shop (which, in reality, was a house trailer donated by a patron of the school and renovated by students.
Because it was an easy-to-please college audience, I got a standing ovation! ;>)
Since those days of my callow youth, I’ve learned to let God determine where I’m bound because if left up to my puny, fallible powers of judgment, the destination might be problematical.