Smith, Effie Waller
|SONGS OF THE MONTHS.|
|THE OLD WALNUT CRADLE.|
Up in the attic I found it,
Far back in the corner it stood,
Where the sunlight never entered--
A cradle of walnut wood.
'Twas loaded with castaway rubbish
Covered with cobwebs and dust,
Abandoned, forsaken and lonely,
An walnut cradle that must
Have been fashioned by my father
(But certainly not for show
You would think, could you only see it!)
More than a century ago.
'Twas rudely made, and unvarnished,
Yet it served its purpose well;
Eleven babies it's cradled,
Had it a voice it could tell.
Four sisters and seven brothers,
And I, the youngest have grown
A tottering woman of eighty,
And am left alone, alone.
The others have quit their wand'rings,
They all have "crossed the bar,"
Have met their Pilot, and anchored
Safe in that Harbor afar.
Oh, this cradle takes me backward,
I seem to hear it rock
As my mother sits beside it
In her coarse and home-spun frock.
I can hear her softly singing
In those happy, golden days,
A lullaby of dreamland,
While she looks with tender gaze
On her baby's closing eyelids,
And with earnestness she prays
To her Father up in Heaven
For her baby's future days.
Oh, form that first bent o'er this cradle,
Hands that first rocked it to and fro,
Oh, voice that sang and heart that prayed
In that happy long ago;
How I long, how I wish for you,
How I long to hear that refrain
Lulling me into dreamland
Like a careless babe again.