Emily Dickinson's Collected Poems

Part Three: Nature 1. Nature, the gentlest mother

Nature, the gentlest mother,

Impatient of no child,

The feeblest or the waywardest, --

Her admonition mild

In forest and the hill

By traveller is heard,

Restraining rampant squirrel

Or too impetuous bird.

How fair her conversation,

A summer afternoon, --

Her household, her assembly;

And when the sun goes down

Her voice among the aisles

Incites the timid prayer

Of the minutest cricket,

The most unworthy flower.

When all the children sleep

She turns as long away

As will suffice to light her lamps;

Then, bending from the sky

With infinite affection

And infiniter care,

Her golden finger on her lip,

Wills silence everywhere.