A place to share struggles and triumphs, a place to bless and serve - but never a place to murmur or complain. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Song For A Fifth Child


Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth,
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
Hang out the washing and butter the bread,
Sew on a button and make up a bed.
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking!

Oh, I've grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
(Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo).
The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew
And out in the yard there's hullabaloo
But I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren't her eyes the most wonderful hue?
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
But children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep...

by Ruth Hulbert Hamilton, in Lady's Home Journal. 1958.

6 comments:

Abby said...

My fifth child has been an absolute miracle in my life, although this poem has such precious meaning for me at the moment. A shocking house has nothing on a baby that needs you, loves you and wants your time, attention and kisses.

Mary Ann said...

Like the song says: You're gonna miss this, you're gonna want this back. You're gonna wish these days hadn't gone by so fast.........We need to cherish the moments as they come.

Jamie Jo said...

Hi...I'm Mary Ann's daughter, and I have 5 children too. I've heard the last of that poem before, but never the first parts. I LOVED it. I needed that today. I am so overwhelmed by all that goes into trying to run a home with 5 children. The laundry alone is killing me! And I don't take enough time with my children to just play. Thank you for reminding me how important that is!

EarlGirl said...

My mom hand stitched that poem while she was expecting her 5th child, who passed away when she was five. My mom presented it framed to me for the birth of my fifth child. I burst out crying. By your fifth, you really know how short babyhood is. It was especially short for my mom's last child.

Bockhamptoner said...

I too have five children and this poem is very apt.
My boys are very precious and so is my time with them.

Matushka Anna said...

I have five living children. My sixth and seventh died before birth. Yes, it's very short and fleeting. I wish I could have some of those moments back.