Summer
WOMANHOOD
I dreamed a dream, and as I dreamed
The sunset faded in the west,
And night stole down the mountain-side,
Her purpled garments pearled with dew,
And in her lustrous hair the evening star.

A wondrous thing it was I dreamed
Amid the circle of pale stars
That poured their glory round the moon,
And circled round her, hand in hand,
With tender liltings such as mothers sing.

I dreamed I stood within a room
Where fragrant silence filled the air,
Like scent of honeysuckle June;
And through the windows, opened wide,
The star-gleams sifted soft like palest dawn.

I walked in shining robes of white,
That floated round me like a cloud
Sun-kissed at morn. A little child
Lay on my breast, its tiny head
Nestled against my warm, untroubled heart.

And as I stood so folded round with peace,
I knew my glorious hour had come,
And waited, gently smiling down
Upon the babe within my arm,
But seeking ever the faint light of stars
With eyes that guessed their mystery
Of joy and tears. All suddenly,
From out my gleaming robes of light
There spread a radiance through the room,
That rose and fell like cadenced waves of song;

It floated through the open door
And shining casements into outer air.
Far down the sleeping street it passed,
High over roof and spire, and seemed
To breathe in benediction down.
Upon the quiet fields beyond,
Where humble hamlets slept, still on
And on, the peaceful glory swept,
Until I lost it in the shining depths
Of star-lit distance, but I knew

It did not fade, but still shone on. 
And ever at my throbbing heart
I felt the warmth of tiny arms,
And in a flash I knew I stood
There as the type of womanhood,

One of the mothers of the race,
Whose light goes out into the world,
Radiant with power and peace and grace,
Making men heroes for their time,—
The light of stars within their eyes.