Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Nov. 5, 1850 - Oct. 30, 1919

 

When Baby Souls Sail Out

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

When from our mortal vision
Grown men and women go
To sail strange fields Elysian
And know what spirits know,
I think of them as tourists,
In some sun-gilded clime,
'Mong happy sights and dear delights
We all shall find, in time.

But when a child goes yonder
And leaves its mother here,
Its little feet must wander,
It seems to me, in fear.
What paths of Eden beauty,
What scenes of peace and rest,
Can bring content to one who went
Forth from a mother's breast?

In palace gardens, lonely,
A little child will roam
And weep for pleasures only
Found in its humble home.
It is not won by splendour,
Nor bought by costly toys;
To hide from harm on mother's arm
Makes all its sum of joys.

It must be when the baby
Goes journeying off alone,
Some angel (Mary, may be)
Adopts it for her own.
Yet when a child is taken
Whose mother stays below,
With weeping eyes, through Paradise,
I seem to see it go.

With troops of angels trying
To drive away its fear,
I seem to hear it crying,
I want my mamma here.
I do not court the fancy,
It is not based on doubt,
It is a thought that comes unsought
When baby souls sail out.

Source:

Poems of Sentiment
Copyright 1911
Gay And Hancock, Ltd., London
 
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