A sad-faced little fellow sits alone in deep disgrace,
There’s a lump arising in his throat, tears streaming down his face;
He wandered from his playmates, for he doesn’t want to hear
Their shouts of merry laughter, since the world has lost its cheer;
He has sipped the cup of sorrow, he has drained the bitter glass,
And his heart is fairly breaking; he’s the boy who didn’t pass.
In the apple tree the robin sings a cheery little song,
But he doesn’t seem to hear it, showing plainly something’s wrong;
Comes his faithful little spaniel for a romp and bit of play,
But the troubled little fellow sternly bids him go away.
All alone he sits in sorrow, with his hair a tangled mass,
And his eyes are red with weeping; he’s the boy who didn’t pass.
How he hates himself for failing, he can hear his playmates jeer,
For they’ve left him with the dullards—gone ahead a half a year,
And he tried so hard to conquer, oh, he tried to do his best,
But now he knows, he’s weaker, yes, and duller than the rest.
He’s ashamed to tell his mother, for he thinks she’ll hate him, too—
The little boy who didn’t pass, who failed of getting through.
Oh, you who boast a laughing son, and speak of him as bright,— Anonymous
And you who love a little girl who comes to you at night
With smiling eyes, with dancing feet, with honors from her school,
Turn to that lonely little boy who thinks he is a fool,
And take him kindly by the hand, the dullest in his class,
He is the one who most needs love, the boy who didn’t pass.