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To E. W. T.

If she neglected one especial gift
And turned from laurel crowns she might have won,
From the high tasks that genius might have done,
Dropping the pencil or the brush to lift
Wee baby feet across the stones, to sift
Meanings from childish prattle, and to croon
Low, tender, cradle-songs in dreamy tone;
Catching from baby eyes, as through a rift
In clouds, the light of heaven.--Is this a lot
To be deplored? Nay, would she if she could
Exchange? First, woman--after, poet--what
You will! Her soul has seized the greater good:
The dizzy heights of Fame were well forgot
To sound the wondrous depths of Motherhood.