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When, at morn or at eve, I have wandered near,
And in various lights have viewed it; With what different forms to friendship dear,
Have the magic of fancy endured it!
It has sometimes seemed like a lonely sail,
A white speck on the emerald billow;
Stretched in peace on its verdant pillow.
But no image of gloom, or of care, or of strife,
Hath it e'er given birth to, one minute; For lamented in death, as beloved in life,
Was he who now slumbers within it.
He was one, who, in youth, on the stormy seas,
Was a far and a fearless ranger; Who, borne on the billow, and blown by the breeze,
Had deemed lightly of death or of danger.
Yet in this rude school had his heart still kept
All the freshness of gentlest feeling;
More of softness and kindness revealing.
And here, when the bustle of youth was past,
O! why was affection, which death could out-last,
But here he slumbers! and many there are
And one far off, who, like eve's dewy star,
TO MY DAUGHTER, ON THE MORNING OF
Hail to this teeming stage of strife—
'Tis nature's worship—felt—confest
Dear babe I ere yet upon thy years
But little reck'st thou, O my child I
Of travail on life's thorny wild,
Of all the dangers, all the woes,
Each loitering footstep which inclose—
Ah! little reck'st thou of the scene
So darkly wrought, that speeds between
The little all we here can find
And the dark mystic sphere behind I
Little reck'st thou, my earliest bom!
Of clouds that gather round thy mom,
Of arts to lure thy soul astray,
Of snares that intersect thy way,
Of secret foes, of friends untrue,
Of fiends who stab the heart they woo—
Little thou reck'st of this sad store 1
Would thou might'st never reck them more!
But thou wilt burst this transient sleep,
Unconscious babe! tho' on that brow
Oh! could a father's prayer repel
The eye's sad grief, the bosom's swell!
Or could a father hope to bear
A darling child's allotted care—
Then thou, my babe, should'st slumber still,
Exempted from all human ill;
A parent's love thy peace should free,
And ask its wounds again for thee.
Sleep on, my child, thy slumber brief
Soon wilt thou reck of cares unknown,