Thursday, April 17, 2014

Rocking Baby to Sleep...

Mothers have many a memory to keep
But the memory of rocking my babies to sleep
Returns now and then in bittersweet peace

‘Rock-a-bye baby in the tree top’
‘Hush little baby, don’t say a word’
Sleep, baby, sleep’ and ‘the weasel goes pop’
‘Neath little star its sweet echo is stirred

Soft on the bosom of mothers they sleep
Warm in the arms that are holding the world
Yes, Mothers have many a memory to keep
But none like the rocking of wee boy or girl

‘Lullaby, goodnight and close your wee eyes’
Soon the bright morning will steal you away
Lullaby, goodnight, my, my how time flies
Let me hold heaven as long as I may…

© Janet Martin

Recently the little guy I babysit needed a little extra rocking due to being sick with colds etc…it stirred many a beautiful memory as I sang the old familiar lullabies to him long after he fell asleep.

These little guys also reminded me of a poem I memorized as a girl because I thought it suited my little brothers at the time.


Bedtime come fo' little boys
Po' little lamb.
Too tiahed out to make a noise,
Po' little lamb.
You gwine t' have to-morrer sho'?
Yes, you tole me dat befo',
Don't you fool me, chile, no mo',
Po' little lamb.

You been bad de livelong day,
Po' little lamb.
Th'owin' stones an' runnin' 'way,
Po' little lamb.
My, but you 's a-runnin' wil',
Look jes' lak some po' folks chile;
Mam' gwine whup you atter while,
Po' little lamb.

Come hyeah! you mos' tiahed to def,
Po' little lamb.
Played yo'se'f clean out o' bref,
Po' little lamb.
See dem han's now--sich a sight!
Would you evah b'lieve dey's white?
Stan' still twell I wash 'em right,
Po' little lamb.

Jes' cain't hol' yo' haid up straight,
Po' little lamb.
Had n't oughter played so late,
Po' little lamb.
Mammy do' know whut she 'd do,
Ef de chillun's all lak you;
You 's a caution now fu' true,
Po' little lamb.

Lay yo' haid down in my lap,
Po' little lamb.
Y' ought to have a right good slap,
Po' little lamb.
You been runnin' roun' a heap.
Shet dem eyes an' don't you peep,
Dah now, dah now, go to sleep,
Po' little lamb.

Paul Laurence Dunbar :

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