The hand that rocks the cradle
 Is the hand that rules the world

[This poem is written by William Ross Wallace, (1819-1881). He was born in Lexington, Kentucky. His first poem appeared in 1837. He was a lawyer by profession, but spent more time on literature. He composed patriotic songs during the civil war which became popular. He was a friend of Edgar Allen Poe whom he resembled in both temperament and habits. He possessed a splendid imagination as well as poetic diction.]

Blessings on the hand of women!
Angels guard its strength and grace,
In the palace, cottage, hovel,
Oh, no matter where the place; Would that never storms assailed it,
Rainbows ever gently curled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.                                                                                 8

Infancy's the tender fountain,
Power may with beauty flow,
Mother's first to guide the streamlets,
From them souls unresting grow
Grow on for the good or evil,
Sunshine streamed or evil hurled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.                                                                                16

Woman, how divine your mission
Here upon our natal sod!
Keep, oh, keep the young heart open
Always to the breath of God!
All true trophies of the ages
Are from mother's love impearled;
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.                                                                                24

Blessings on the hand of women!
Fathers, sons and daughters cry,
And the sacred song is mingled
With the worship in the sky
Mingles where no tempest darkens,
Rainbows evermore are hurled
For the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.                                                                                32


William Ross Wallace

Notes:
The first stanza is in the form of a prayer asking God's blessings on mothers.
Line 3: hovel: a poor man's hut.
Line 6: rainbow: the coloured arch made of seven colours which appears in the sky after rainstorms. In English literature, it is said that treasure lies at the end of a rainbow. It is also a sign that the storm has passed and the trouble is over.
The second stanza describes the work of a mother.
Line 4: unresting: always working.
The third stanza is addressed to mothers.
Line 2: natal sod: land of one's birth.
Line 5: trophies: a shield or cup given as a prize for some great achievement, sometimes decorated with pearls.
The fourth stanza quotes, in the firs, line, a prayer said by all mankind in honour of mothers
Lines 3 and 4: mingled with the worship in the sky: the prayer said on earth is also said by the angels and saints in heaven.
Line 5 and 6: where no tempest darkens, rainbows evermore are hurled: in the heaven there will be no more sufferings. It will be like the relief we feel after a storm.

 
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