Mother’s Question

I think as the night draws nigh
Of an old house on the hill,
Of a yard all wide and blossom-starred
Where the children played at will.
And when the night at last came down,
Hushing the merry din,
Mother would look around and ask,
“Are all the children in?”

‘Tis many and many a year since then.
And the old house on the hill
No longer echoes to childish feet,
And the yard is still, so still.
But I see it all, as the shadows creep,
And though many the years have been
Since then, I can hear mother ask,
“Are all the children in?”

I wonder if when the shadows fall
On the last short, earthly day,
When we say good-bye to the world outside,
All tired with our childish play.
When we step over to Jesus’ Land
Where mother so long has been,
Will we hear her ask, just as of old,
“Are all the children in?”

                                              In memory of Anna E. Tostenson