Buttercup, Poppy, Forget-me-not--
These three bloomed in a garden spot;
And once, all merry with song and play,
A little one heard three voices say:
"Shine and shadow, summer and spring,
O thou child with the tangled hair
And laughing eyes! we three shall bring
Each an offering passing fair".
The little one did not understand,
But they bent and kissed the dimpled hand.
Buttercup gambolled all day long,
Sharing the little one's mirth and song;
Then, stealing along on misty gleams,
Poppy came bearing the sweetest dreams.
Playing and dreaming--and that was all
Till once a sleeper would not awake:
Kissing the little face under the pall,
We thought of the words the third flower spake;
And we found betimes in a hallowed spot
The solace and peace of Forget-me-not.
Buttercup shareth the joy of day,
Glinting with gold the hours of play;
Bringeth the Poppy sweet repose,
When the hands would fold and the eyes would close;
And after it all--the play and the sleep
Of a little life--what cometh then?
To the hearts that ache and the eyes that weep
A new flower bringeth God's peace again.
Each one serveth its tender lot--
Buttercup, Poppy, Forget-me-not.