careless eye, and the piteous one
Poor lost Maria alike will shun.
She loves to roam with her fearless child
O'er the flowery field and the lonely wild;
To list, in a bower of tangled vines,
As the wind comes rustling through the pines;
To mark the light skip of the timid hare,
And to watch the bee on her path of air;
The crumbled nut to the ant to fling,
And to take the fly from his deadly swing.
She sits at eve, by the echoing hill,
To mock the voice of the whip-poor-will.
At times she will climb to some craggy steep,
Will look at her babe, and then to the deep;
As she swings her foot on the fearful height,
Like a bird of the ocean poised for flight.
Then, she calls for a shroud to wrap the dead;
And her voice comes low, as a prayer were said.
Then, mournful and sweet, as for one who slumbers
To wake no more, flow her dirge-like numbers.
She sings of the flowers that are fair and new,
Which the morning light or the evening dew
Has touched but once, that are meet to spread
O'er the grave where beauty has made its bed.
But most she loves, in the pensive night,
When the air is still, and the moon is bright,
To gaze on her sleeping infant's face,
And the one loved image there to trace.
Yet, when the cherished illusion breaks,
When fancy's vision its farewell takes,
And flies, as the thing of a blissful dream,
Her eye will wander across the stream,
And the big tear stand on her cold, pale cheek;
But the name, she never is heard to speak.
Her sorrow was that which none must hear-
Too sacred and deep for an earthly ear;
'Twas such, when its waves in the bosom swell,
As we to no friend, but our God, can tell.
Like the stricken bird, that will feebly fly
To the nearest covert, alone to die,
She hid the arrow that pierced her breast,
And the wound that had robbed her soul of rest.
For they came from him to whom alone
Her love was pledged at her Maker's throne.
She had tried to smile till her lip was white,
And her eye with weeping had quenched its light;
Till the clouds of care her brow had shaded,
Her cheek was sunk, and its rose had faded.
From the joys of life in its morning torn,
The hapless maniac, dark and lorn,
With the future a void-a waste the past,
And the present a dream, on the world was cast.
The faithless she never again may meet
Till they both shall stand at the judgment seat!