TO ALL PARENTS

"I'll lend you, for a little while,
a child of mine," He said
For you to love while he lives,
and mourn when he is dead.
It may be six or seven years,
or twenty-two or three,
But will you, 'til I call him back,
take care of him for me?
He'll bring his charms to gladden you,
and shall his stay be brief,
You'll have his lovely memories
as solace for your grief.
I can not promise he will stay,
as all from earth return,
But there are lessons taught down there
I want this child to learn.
I've looked the wide world over
in my search for teachers true
And from the throngs that crowd life's lanes,
I have selected you
Now will you give him all your love,
not think the labour vain,
Nor hate me when I come to call,
to take him back again
I fancied that I heard them say,
"Dear Lord, thy will be done"
For all the joy this child will bring,
the risk of grief we'll run.
We'll shower him with tenderness
and love him while we may
And for the happiness we've known,
forever grateful stay
And should the angels call for him
much sooner than we planned
We'll brave the bitter grief that comes,
and try to understand.

~ Unknown ~