"I'll lend to you for a little while a child of mine," God said.
"for you to love while he lives, and mourn for when he's dead.
It may be six hours or seven days, or perhaps two years or three.
But will you, until I call him back, take care of him for me?
He will bring his charms to gladden you, and should his stay be brief,
you'll have his lovely memories as a solace for your grief.
I cannot promise he will stay, since all from earth return.
But there are lessons taught down there I want this child to learn.
I've looked the whole world over in my search for teachers true,
and from the throngs that crowd life's lanes, I have chosen you.
Now, will you give him all your love, nor think the labor vain?
Nor hate me when I come to call, to take him back again?"
I fancied that I heard them say, "Dear Lord, Thy will be done.
For all the joy Thy child shall bring, the risk of grief we'll run.
We will shelter him with tenderness. We will love him while we may.
And for the happiness we have known, will forever grateful stay.
And should the angels call for him much sooner than we planned,
We'll brave the bitter grief that comes, and try to understand."