Mother and Son (The disciple)

Mother and Son (The disciple)

(The Saviour of the World, Vol IV Book IV Poem LXXII)

“These little ones which believe in Me.”
“Little children… ye have known the Father.”
“Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings hast Thou perfected praise.”
“Their angels do always behold the face of My Father.”


She sat at her young son’s feet—

Sat low by her sleeping boy—

Much pond’ring the high-born air he wore,

As of native claim on joy.

“Sure not of his father or me

Was he made thus free of the earth;

Ah, were we at large! but the hours confine,—

Knows he a loftier birth?

“Great is the mystery! yea—

How little, O babe, art thou mine!

A halo surrounds and divides thee,

Living Words about thee shine!

“All faith and hid knowledge, thine—

My little one, how can it be?

When sing’st thou those perfect praises—

The Father, say, where dost see?

“Thy Guardian waiteth ever

On the face of our God for light,—

O little son, how high thy estate!

Thy mother, alas, her plight!”


She slept. As one bends to waken

A harp, so gave voice to her pain

The angel in ward: “Wherefore troubled?

Thy boy’s state, is it not all gain?”

“Yea, all my breath is thanksgiving,

This heart lives in song for the grace;

Yet at moments a pang,—sure, not envy,—

Comes with the light on his face.

“To thine angel-state it were easy

To win fullest thought of the Lord;

Faith comes to us wafted of storms: these—

‘Believe they on Me,’ is his word!

“Say thou! these simple, how search they

The mystery of things unseen?

By what wit can they know to trust Him

Whose Name scarce lisp they, I ween?”

“Nay, mother, thy heart best answers;

Is there any in all the wide land

So utterly trusts thee and worships,

So keepeth him in thine hand,

“As the babe who not yet calls thee,

Nor knows any name for his joy?

Thus it lies in the hand of the King,—

The simple soul of thy boy!”

St. Mark ix, 42.
1 St. John ii, 13.
St. Matthew xviii, 10.
St. Matthew xxi, 16; Psalm 82.