Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. I. Of Home: of Friendship
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume I. Of Home: of Friendship.  1904.
 
Poems of Home: I. About Children
Baby May
William Cox Bennett (1820–1895)
 
CHEEKS as soft as July peaches;
Lips whose dewy scarlet teaches
Poppies paleness; round large eyes
Ever great with new surprise;
Minutes filled with shadeless gladness;        5
Minutes just as brimmed with sadness;
Happy smiles and wailing cries;
Crows, and laughs, and tearful eyes;
Lights and shadows, swifter born
Than on wind-swept autumn corn;        10
Ever some new tiny notion,
Making every limb all motion;
Catchings up of legs and arms;
Throwings back and small alarms;
Clutching fingers; straightening jerks;        15
Twining feet whose each toe works;
Kickings up and straining risings;
Mother’s ever new surprisings;
Hands all wants and looks all wonder
At all things the heavens under;        20
Tiny scorns of smiled reprovings
That have more of love than lovings;
Mischiefs done with such a winning
Archness that we prize such sinning;
Breakings dire of plates and glasses;        25
Graspings small at all that passes;
Pullings off of all that ’s able
To be caught from tray or table;
Silences,—small meditations
Deep as thoughts of cares for nations;        30
Breaking into wisest speeches
In a tongue that nothing teaches;
All the thoughts of whose possessing
Must be wooed to light by guessing;
Slumbers,—such sweet angel-seemings        35
That we ’d ever have such dreamings;
Till from sleep we see thee breaking,
And we ’d always have thee waking;
Wealth for which we know no measure;
Pleasure high above all pleasure;        40
Gladness brimming over gladness;
Joy in care; delight in sadness;
Loveliness beyond completeness;
Sweetness distancing all sweetness;
Beauty all that beauty may be;—        45
That ’s May Bennett; that ’s my baby.
 
 
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