The White Cross
Yes, he is gone, his name is written there
In jet-black letters, staring from the white.
And yet, because I yield not to despair, You look
askance, and think my grief is slight.
I felt the greatest depths of mortal pain
The day I know, from Canada he'd sailed away.
Surely, such anguish could not come again; And
life, in any human heart, holds sway.
All that was mortal of that boy of mine
Now lies afar beneath the war scarred earth.
But that which gave him life, the spark divine,
His spirit, was set free, a second birth.
And when often I give up and think can't go on,
'tis useless to try.
It seems I can feel him near me saying,
"Please mother, don't cry."
And so, I go my way, with proud head high,
Knowing full well that he's all mine once more,
A close companionship that can not die, Sweeter
than any we'd ever known before.
He gave his beautiful young life away, that others,
in this torn world might be free
His soul died not, and it belongs today, To no one
else, but just his God and me.
Nancy Jane Wiley Hill (1875-1960) was always writing something. Many of those poems are now in the possession of her granddaughter Shirley Kern. Shirley, with the help of her sister-in-law Ruth Ormsby, transcribed these poems in 1996 for a Hill-Ormsby-Kern family reunion. I am going to post many of these poems so that they may be enjoyed by all.
These are copyright 1996 and reprinted with permission.