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Carolyn Sherwin Bailey

Which Loved Best

"I love you, mother," said little John;

Then, forgetting his work, his cap went on,

And he was off to the garden swing,

And left her the water and wood to bring.

"I love you, mother," said rosy Nell,

"I love you better than tongue can tell."

Then she teased and pouted full half the day,

Till her mother was glad when she went to play.

"I love you, mother," said little Fan;

"To-day I'll help you all I can;

How glad I am school doesn't keep!"

So she rocked the baby fast asleep.

Then, stepping softly, she fetched the broom

And swept the floor and tidied the room.

Busy and happy all day was she,

Helpful and good as a child could be.

"I love you, mother," again they said,

Three little children going to bed.

How do you think their mother guessed

Which of them really loved her best?


Even a child maketh himself known by his doings,

Whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

—Proverbs xx. 11.