This is not an Alias Smith and Jones story. It was written after a visit to Penfield, NY--Pete Duel's home town.
You Should Have Been There
You should have been there yesterday, with your grandchildren in tow.
You could have shown us, smiling, all the spots you used to go.
We’d love to know just where you used to swim and fish and play.
You should have been there with us—oh, we missed you yesterday.
You should have been there with us, your homecoming a joy.
You could have brought your son with you, or your daughter and her boy.
You could have led him, hand in hand, down paths you used to run,
And smiled and watched as he raced off, like you, to chase the sun.
You could have stood there with us and watched the sun go down,
And told us what things used to be like, here in your home town.
You could have looked out, once more, on these hills you’ve often seen
And watched the shadows lengthen on the fields of summer green.
I’d love to see your face light up, remembering stream and tree,
If we could somehow change the past to what it ought to be.
We don’t know why you had to leave, you’ve been so long away,
You should have been there with us, Pete, we missed you yesterday.