DON'T go to the theater, concert, or ball,

But stay in your room tonight; 

Deny yourself to the friends that call,

And a good long letter write; 

Write to the sad old folks at home,

Who sit when the day is done, 

With folded hands and downcast eyes,

And think of the absent one.

Don't selfishly scribble, "Excuse my haste,

I've scarcely the time to write;" 

Lest their brooding thoughts go wandering back

To many a by-gone night, 

When they lost their needed sleep and rest,

And every breath was a prayer 

That God would leave their delicate babe

To their tender love and care.

Don't let them feel that you've no more need

Of their love or counsel wise, 

For the heart grows strangely sensitive

When age has dimmed the eyes. 

It might be well to let them believe

You never forget them quite; 

That you deem it a pleasure when far away,

Long letters home to write.

Don't think that the young and giddy friends

Who make your pastime gay, 

Have half the anxious thoughts for you

That the old folks have today. 

The duty of writing do not put off;

Let sleep or pleasure wait, 

Lest the letter for which they looked

Be a day or an hour too late.

Be sure the sad old folks at home,

With locks fast turning white, 

Are longing to hear from the absent one, 

Write them a letter tonight.