Frances Ellen Watkins

Here you will find the Poem A Little Child Shall Lead Them of poet Frances Ellen Watkins

A Little Child Shall Lead Them

Only a little scrap of blue 
Preserved with loving care, 
But earth has not a brilliant hue 
To me more bright and fair. 

Strong drink, like a raging demon, 
Laid on my heart his hand, 
When my darling joined with others 
The Loyal Legion band. 

But mystic angels called away 
My loved and precious child, 
And o'er life's dark and stormy way 
Swept waves of anguish wild. 

This badge of the Loyal Legion 
We placed upon her breast, 
As she lay in her little coffin 
Taking her last sweet rest. 

To wear that badge as a token 
She earnestly did crave, 
So we laid it on her bosom 
To wear it in the grave. 

Where sorrow would never reach her 
Nor harsh words smite her ear; 
Nor her eyes in death dimmed slumber 
Would ever shed a tear. 

"What means this badge?" said her father, 
Whom we had tried to save; 
Who said, when we told her story, 
"Don't put it in the grave." 

We took the badge from her bosom 
And laid it on a chair; 
And men by drink deluded 
Knelt by that badge in prayer. 

And vowed in that hour of sorrow 
From drink they would abstain; 
And this little badge became the wedge 
Which broke their galling chain. 

And lifted the gloomy shadows 
That overspread my life, 
And flooding my home with gladness, 
Made me a happy wife. 

And this is why this scrap of blue 
Is precious in my sight; 
It changed my sad and gloomy home 
From darkness into light.