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The thunder crash she would not hear,
However weary she may be,
Worried about me was mother dear,
Stockings warmed by the kitchen fire,
And now, whenever it rains, I see
There are days of grief before her; there are hours that she will weep;
You may boast men's deeds of glory, you may tell their courage great,
And I knew, as well as any
I knew that my recent illness
Now his mother, when I threaten
Some day when he's grown as I am,
Ma promises that she'll keep still, then off we
A little farther on Ma cries: "He signaled for
If Pa should speed the car a bit some rigs to
Infancy's the tender fountain,
Woman, how divine your mission
Blessings on the hand of women!
I see her yet a girl in years,
"Henry is this your son? She said
There leaped from out my Father's eyes
A year had scarcely rolled away
She was so gentle, fair and kind,
Hot fever smote with burning blight
And when my courage quite gave way,
There came a change but fingers small,
Nay not with the cannon of battle-shot,
But deep in a walled-up woman's heart
No marshalling troops, no bivouac song,
Yet, faithful still as a bridge of stars,
Oh, ye with banners and battle-shot,
O spotless woman in a world of shame,
There are times when only a Mother's love
There are times when only a Mother's faith
For a Mother's heart and a Mother's faith
Oh, the long nights that she came at my call to me!
Slave to her baby! Yes, that was the way of her,
We hunt 'em on the mantelpiece an' by the kitchen sink,
We've found 'em in the Bible, an' we've found 'em in the flour,
But we're mighty glad, I tell you, that the duty's ours to do,
There shall never be another quite so tender, quite so kind
Death stood near the hour she bore us, agony was hers to know,
Vain are all our tributes to her if in words alone they dwell.
BECAUSE I feel that, in the Heavens above,
The angels, whispering to one another,
Can find, among their burning terms of love,
None so devotional as that of 'Mother',
Therefore by that dear name I long have called you
You who are more than mother unto me,
And fill my heart of hearts, where Death installed you
In setting my Virginia's spirit free.
My mother my own mother, who died early,
Was but the mother of myself; but you
Are mother to the one I loved so dearly,
And thus are dearer than the mother I knew
By that infinity with which my wife
Was dearer to my soul than its soul-life.
Do you know you have asked for the costliest thing
Ever made by the hand above
A woman's heart and a woman's life
And a woman's wonderful love?
Do you know you have asked for this priceless thing
As a child might ask for a toy?
Demanding what others have died to win
With the reckless dash of a boy!
You have written my lesson of duty out,
Manlike, you have questioned me;
Now, stand at the bar of my woman's soul,
While I shall question thee.
I am fair and young, but the rose will fade
From my soft young cheeks one day
Will you love me then 'mid the falling leaves
As you did 'mid the bloom of May?
Is your heart an ocean so strong and deep,
I may launch my all on its tide?
A loving woman finds heaven or hell
On the day she's made a bride!
I require all things that are grand and true,
All things that a man should be;
If you give this all, I would stake my life,
To be all you demand of me.
If you can't do this, a laundress and cook
You can hire with a little pay.
But a woman's heart and a woman's life
Are not to be won that way.
There will be a moaning in your heart,
There will come a glory in your eyes,
Dear son of mine, by all the lives behind you;
God guard you, son of mine, where'er you wander;
Listen! and be now delighted:
Organ finer, deeper, clearer,
Harmonies from time-touched towers,
Ah! 'twas heard by ear far purer,
'Tis a mother's large affection
FROM out the front of being, undefiled,
Yea, shall she not rejoice, shall not her frame
But the birches below in the valley are older,
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