Motherhood [poem by Kenneth Mackay]

[Editor: This poem by Kenneth Mackay was published in Stirrup Jingles from the Bush and the Turf and Other Rhymes (1887).]


Two cherubs lie in happy sleep
Within the hollow of a tree.
Above, the May leaves lazy sweep;
Low hums the bee.

A couch of snowy feathers theirs,
In silvan shadows sweetly set;
No weary days engraved with cares
Have come as yet.

Above, fond watching o’er their nest,
One elbow leaning on the wood,
Is one, whom they have lately blessed
With motherhood.

Around her form white roses twine —
Not whiter than each snowy breast;
While every flow’ret seems to pine
On her to rest.

With hands light clasped above her head,
She gazes on them sleeping there;
And all her life is fully fed
With visions fair.

They are in truth her dearer life;
Save them no other joy she craves, —
But asks to shield from care and strife
Her sleeping babes.

Kenneth Mackay, Stirrup Jingles from the Bush and the Turf and Other Rhymes, Sydney: Edwards, Dunlop & Co., 1887, page 71

Editor’s notes:
flow’ret = floweret: small flower; floret

o’er = over (pronounced the same as “oar”, “or”, and “ore”)

silvan = (an alternative spelling of “sylvan”) regarding a wood or forest (although often a reference to something living within a wood, referring to person, spirit, or tree)

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