Mammy

I often wonder how
Life clicks because
They don't make women now
Like Mammy was.
When broods of two or three
Content most men,
How wonderful was she
With children ten!

Though sixty years have gone,
As I look back,
I see her rise at dawn,
Our boots to black;
Pull us from drowsy bed,
Wet sponge to pass,
And speed us porridge fed
To morning class.

Our duds to make and mend,
Far into night,
O'er needle she would spend
By bleary light.
Yet as her head drooped low,
With withered hair,
It seemed the candle glow
Made halo there.

And so with silvered pow
I sigh because
They don't make women now
Like Mammy was.

by Robert William Service

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