The Unseen Friend

My child went forth into my garden fair,
Having no wish or will to stay by me;
But that I ever followed him out there,
He did not see.

He passed on from the garden to the wild,
Where cruel and fierce roaring monsters lie;
I drove them back, but nothing told the child
That it was I.

He saw his brothers toiling on the road;
"I will give life and strength for them," cried he;
But that I made him strong to lift their load,
He did not see.

Soul-thrilling words of love bade him rejoice,
And filled with music all that desert place;
And yet he never knew it was my voice,
Nor saw my face.

And when the night came, and his eyes grew dim,
And dark and chill the mists about him lay,
He did not know my hand was guiding him,
Till it was day.

F. A. Owen.

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July 14, 1906

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