Hidden Lives Revealed. A virtual archive - children in care 1881-1981 * Image of handwritten text

Case 2

24. Poems by J. 1923, 1924, 1927

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At times the brightest face grows pensive
As memory's book we read:
So few real gains alas! extensive
Our failings in word and deed!

Through peaceful lanes where wild flowers grow
I've wandered as in a dream:
So oft I'm still in the restless flow
Of the City's mighty stream!

"Twas in childhood's days this page was pressed
In memory's sacred tome:
Its head-line is this - there's naught amiss! -
"God's true Gentle Man from Home"!

Though crushed in the fight, with heart still light,
He kindly thought of others:
In hospital cot his smile failed not,
His heart was like a mother's!

Viewing a child snatched from furnace heat,
The surgeon* was in despair:
"Living flesh," said he, "shall Death defeat
And the fierce flame's wounds repair!"

With earnest face said the man of grace:
"Well, here's the flesh you may free!"
He bared a limb - it was up to him
To give all in charity!

As years roll by, and I find him not,
My heart's oft weary and sad:
To see him I crave, he was so brave -
To thank him would make me glad!

Perhaps he has reached that peaceful Home,
Up there in that bright blue sky!
Ah! sometimes I fear, with bitter tear,
I may miss him by and by!

That good man's way to the Homeland gay, -
Oh! may we heed and be wise! -
To joys above with the God of Love,
Is the Way of Sacrifice!

"I have chosen thee in the furnace ..."
What matters in life's short span!
For Faith's keen sight sees a Vision bright:
The Form of the Son of Man! J.

From, 1923.

*The late Sir Wm. McCormack, St. Thomas's Hospital, London, early seventies.

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