In the light of a new day dawning
I see an evangel stand;
And to fields that are ripe for harvest
I am lured by a beckoning hand.
But I have no place with the Reaper;
No part in the soul-stirring strife;
I must hover by babies on the hearthstone
And teach them the lessons of life.
I must answer their eager questions
With God-given words of truth;
I must guide them in ways of wisdom
Through childhood and early youth.
I must nourish their bodies
With infinite watchful care.
Take thought of the loaves and fishes,
And the raiment that they must wear.
But at night when lessons are over
And I cuddle each sleepy head;
When the questions are asked and answered
And the last little prayer is said;
When the fruitless unrest has vanished
That fretted my heart through the day,
Then I kneel in the midst of my children
And humbly and thankfully pray.
Dear Lord, when I stand with the reapers
Before Thee at the set of the Sun;
When the sheaves of the harvest are garnered,
And life and its labor is done,
I shall lay at Thy feet these children.
To my heart and my garments they cling,
I may not go forth with the reapers,
But these are the sheaves I shall bring.
This poem was first published in the "Toledo Blade,
June 10, 1915.
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