From The Birmingham Age Herald, December 6, 1914. By Kate Porter.
When he was a little boy o’ mine,
And e’en before he came,
I thought of him as a hero brave,
A man who’d win a name.
The little hands that clung to mine
I taught to work alone,
The little mind I taught to think
Without depending on my own.
I made his little body strong,
I made him brave and true,
Although I knew that all the while
From me he further grew.
Then why should I be sorrowing,
His country’s call has come?
Oh, why should I not feel my pride?
He bravely leaves his home.
His land is what I trained him for,
So why should tears fall fast?
The man-child that I gave to it
Goes forth to serve at last!
As strong as any mother’s son
I watched him ride away,
Yet why do I keep thinking him
My little boy today?
Long years it’s been since I last heard
His voice in childish key,
And why do I keep hearing now
A little cry for me?
’Twas sweet to hold his baby form
(How safe he was with me!)
But ever in my mind I hold
The man that was to be.
And now how fades that vision bright,
This thought of him, in pain!
Ah, why can I but see instead
My little boy again?