“Infant Daughter of —”
By Alice M. Burnett
If only they had waked me from that deep
And dreamless sleep,
And brought my baby daughter to my side.
If only I had held her once before she died,
And felt her precious head
So warm, and gently pressed
Against my breast.
But no, they made me sleep
And so I did not know
Until she had been buried deep
Beneath the snow.
They said that it was best,
That I was weak and needed rest
Before I learned that she was dead.
Today, when spring has bared the ground,
I slipped away, and came
Out to the family plot, alone,
And here I found
The small, white stone
Which bears no name,
The tiny purple iris bloom around –
I think she sent them to me as a sign –
And so, dear God above,
When all the children gather at your knee,
Will you please call this little girl of mine,
And kiss her once for me,
And name her “Iris,” with her mother’s love.