The little life, soft-moulded, that fits my circling arm,
The little heart that leans on mine, and knows no sin nor harm,
The little thoughts that I can guide, the days that I can plan,
Yes, yes, this is my little son, but oh! my soul — a man!
That complex riddle God has made, from which he seems to shrink,
And turn his face, a man! to live, and fight, and strive, and think
Thoughts that I cannot fathom, see sights I never saw,
Dream dreams, and fight temptations, and make, or break the law.
A man! an arrow launched by me to pierce unmeasured space,
And hit the mark, or miss and fail, and meet me face to face
In some obscure hereafter — my heart shakes in my breast.
Oh! let me keep my little child; I dare not face the rest.
Agnes L. Storrie. Poems, J. W. Kettlewell, Sydney, 1909, pages 222-223