Josias Homely


Lines (Supposed To Be Addressed By A Mother To Her Only Living Child.)

Why is thy soft blue eye, with searching glance,
Examining thy mother's face, my child ?
CarCst thou have noted that a tear has darap'd
The cheek that smiles in harmony with thine ?
Thou seem'st to wonder, that the eye which looks
With fond unutterable love on thee,
Should thus be-dim'd with ought betokening grief

* * * *

My own ! thou art my only living child !

* * * *

'Tis thus a sadness mingles with the joy
Which circles round thy mother's throbbing heart;
'Tis thus the smile w^hich welcomed thee to life
Was darken'd by remembrance of the dead.
Thou had'st a brother, who was fair like thee.
And on his cheek the rosy hue of health

To my pleased fancy token'd many years ;
I thought a noblo fearlesness of soul
Like to his father's, gleam'd from his dark eye—
(Hush—do not weep my child because I weep)
—He pass'd away—he only came to earth
To smile upon his mother and to die !

Like the still evening dews on closing flowers,
On thy hush'd spirit silent rest descends ;
Tomorrow thou wilt wake again to joyous life.
My eyes are watchful, and my soul is sad.
Still let me press thee to my bursting heart,
And bless thee while thou sleepest ; let me watch
The dark ting'd eyelid closing on its mate,
And chant to thee the hymn thou lov'st to hear.
But my voice falters, for a nameless dread
Still turns a mother's rapture into fear—
The blossoms of my heart were swept away
liike summer flowers before the autumn winds,
And thou alone art left to me—a pearl
Of all loves treasury, alone preserved.

Now in the dread deep silence of the night,
When care is wearied out and gone to rest ;
When grief has number'd o'er its woes and sleeps ;
When slumb'ring misers have forgot their gold.
And woe-worn poverty its wretchedness,
Thy mother's anxious heart is still awake ;
A rushing melody of sad sweet sounds
Is trembling on my lip— I'll try to sing.

Ah ! imich of sad experience must be thine,
Ere thou wilt fully comprehend why words
Though fondly uttered are thus sad in sound.
The careless sports, the passionless delights
Of childhood's bright, and laughter-loving hours,
Must all have melted into one fond dream
Of love and tenderness—the life of life—
The imao^e of the loved one must have smiled
Upon thee in the features of his son ;
Death must have stood beside thee and have snatch'd
Away the gem, the pearl-drop of thy heart—
O yes, thou must become what I now am
Ere thou canst comprehend why tears
And smiles are mingling on thy mother's cheek ;
Why sadness chequers thus the thrilling joy,
Which passes through each fibre of my heart,
When thou dost press thy little lips to mine
And I embrace—my only Iiving child,
And sing to her the song she seems to love.
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