UPON THE LOSS OF HER CHILDREN'S PHOTOGRAPHS AT SEA
thou no mercy, wind, that thou should'st tear from me,
All that is left me of my loved-my own?
Thy hand is human, else it could not be
With weight of sorrow in my poor heart borne.
Two clinging vines, trained by my erring hand,
Two rose-buds, with their petals scarce unclosing-
See how they float, like tiny barks well manned,
Now like a bird upon the wave reposing.
Mock me not, waves! Why on your flirting spray,
Toss ye my precious darlings to and fro?
Oh! save them, sailor, ere they pass away;
Their worth to me, no mortal's soul can know.
There! see ye not their fairy brightness gleaming,
Like stars upon the darkness of the night?
See that fond smile upon each feature beaming;
Wave, can ye thus deprive my soul of light?
On, on they fly! too late! the ocean cave
Now claims among her jewels two rare gems,
Worth thousands such as Eastern monarchs crave,
To form star-clusters in their diadems.
Whene'er I looked intot hose faces fair,
Into these eyes of clear celestial blue,
I always prayed, and felt God heard my prayer,
That for their sakes I might be good and true.
Now those fair faces and those eyes of blue,
No more will daunt me with their pleading gaze;
The deep sea hides them from my reckless view,
And unrebuked I'll walk in worldly ways.
No! not unchecked; when sin's allurements fair,
Tempt me to err, with wily, subtle art,
I hear sweet voices in each breath of air,
"See, mother, see! thy children in thy heart."
Then keep my jewels, sea, and guard them well;
I care not, wind, for your revengeful rage;
My babes are painted by love's mystic spell,
In colors rare, upon fond memory's page.