BOOK OF POEMS
PRINTED BY DUDLEY & BURNS.
NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC.
The writer of these Poems is a young woman who lost her sight while studying at the Normal School to fit herself for a teacher. She had previously lost her left hand by amputation, and the sale of this little work is almost the only means she has of gaining a living.
J. W. ANNIS,
W. M. Minister.
BROOKLYN, 1874. [unnumbered page]
A DYING GIRL TO HER MOTHER.
I am dying, mother dying, Upon this far off shore, Soon the sands of time shall vanish And the race of like be o’er. Soon this sinking form shall slumber On death’s cold and tranquil breast, Soon shall this weary spirit enter, Upon its eternal rest. Mother, can’st thou with my Saviour, Say “I freely thee forgive,” All the wanderings, sins and errors, That have often made thee grieve. [unnumbered page] O, I long to clasp thee, mother, In a fond and long embrace, And to hear thee bid the wanderer, Welcome to thy heart and place. But the feet of time move swiftly, On earth I may not gaze on thee Still beyond death’s troubles waters, Ransomed spirits wander free. Meet me, mother, on that shore, When the storms of life are past, And there from sin and sorrow free, Secure with Christ we’ll rest.
TO A SUFFERER.
O Sister dear, do not forget, In sorrow’s gloomy might, That there is One whose love can turn The darkness into light. His arm shall circle thee about, When roll the billows o’er, Upheld by that Almighty arm, Fear not when tempests roar. [page 6] In love He Chastens, that more close He may draw thee to His side, That ’neath the shadow of His wing, Thou may’st continually abide. O do not faint, dear suffering one, Beneath the chastening rod, Look up in confidence to Him, Thy Father and thy God.
Not one of all the sparrows that Float thought the air on careless wing, Fall to the ground unnoticed by The great Omniscient eye, Of Him that slumbers not. Then wipe the faithless tear away, Rejoice, O pilgrim, in the way. Thy Father cares for all His hands have made, And Oh! how much for those redeemed By His beloved’s blood. [page 7] Tho’ oft the shepherd seems to lead His flock by a dark mountain path, O’ergrown with thorns where dreary fears Assail them oft like armed foes, He leads them right. Tho’ adverse winds blight earthly hopes, And the crushing tide of human woes, Break o’er thy bark in heavy waves, Bear not, tho’ near, e’en to the grave, The Saviour guides. Tho’ wild the tempest roars o’erhead, And to it there seems no cessation, Save in the sleep that knows no waking, E’en the tranquility of the tomb, Rest all on Christ. Not one of all that trust in Him, Shall sink beneath the darksome tide, Might’s the arm that holds the universe, Watchful the eye o’er Israel kept— Tender God’s love for them. Yea, e’en the devices of wicked men, Shall for His Israel’s good appear; All things shall work for good to them Till all gloriously upon the édifice, The last stone is raised. [page 8] Till in meridian splendor grand, God’s spiritual temple forth shall stand, Elect and precious, from whom shall rise A shout—’twill rend the sky, Of victory through grace. Then, and not till then, shall The volume great of time be closed, And on the brow of this fair universe, Lofty and magnificent, shall written be, “’Tis finished.”
IN MEMORY OF MRS. B.
She’s gone from the darkening shades of time To her celestial home; She stands a radient spirit bright, Before the eternal throne. She’s passed o’er death’s dark billows, Through the shining ports of light, Entered the rest of glory-land, Where there is no more night. [page 9] She’s gone, and rests from labour, By pure and living streams; And her works of mercy follows her Up to those heavenly scenes. Her head to suffering tales of woe, That oft did listening bow; Is circled by a coronet Of fadeless glory now. The eye oft moistened wit the dews Of sympathetic tears; Is fixed unclouded on her Lord, And a fadeless lustre bears. The hands that here had finished all, Now wave the conquering palm; The voice to us so still in death, Is singing “Worthy the Lamb.” The spirit pure, unsullied, bright, Has found a genial clime, And ranges o’er the plains of light— Beyond the floods of time. She’s joined the spirits of the loved Who went awhile before; She waits to welcome home the friends, She left on the wayworn shore. [page 10] Oh! who could deem the star gone out, That shines in heaven’s dome; O, who could deem the jewel lost, That adorns the Saviour’s throne. Dear departed one! we mourn thy loss, But would not call thee back From thy eternal home, to wander O’er life’s uncertain tract. Though much the church now mourns thy loss No sigh escapes thy breast, For sorrow has no lot or part, In thy eternal rest. Asleep in Jesus? Yes thou art— And with Him thou wilt come; When He with angels shall descend, To take his ransomed home. Weak is my effort, poor the tribute I lay upon thy tomb; For thou wert my benefactor kind, In hours, dark hours of gloom. [page 11]
BE NOT WEARY IN WELL DOING.
Be not weary through the road Seemeth long, and rough, and dreary; No longer than for thee is needful. Shall thy Lord and Saviour tarry. Be not weary, though oft cares, Press thee with an iron hand; Soon thy freed and jorous spirit. Shall join the holy angel band. Be not weary, though the tempest Gathers darkly o’er thy head; A few more tossings on life’s billows, And the darkness shall have fled. Be not weary, though sorrow’s waves Roll in quick succession o’er; Each dark billow bears the nearer, Nearer to a purer shore. Be not weary, though before thee, Many lov’d ones reach the goal; They are taken from life’s evils; Thou art left to watch for souls. [page 12] Be not weary, though oft stooping, To lift a fallen brother up; Christ’s approving words shall greet thee, “Thou hast done it unto me.” Be not weary in the conflict, Grace shall bear thee conquering thro’ Soon the goal of life you’ll enter, And the victor’s crown you’ll view. Be not weary, sow at all times, Sow by waters great and small; Stand heavy laden with thy sheaves, Waiting for thy Master’s call. Be not weary, soon you’ll lay The weapons for your warfare down, And exchange for strife and anguish, The victorious palm and crown. Soon you’ll view the countless number, Soon you’ll join the white-robed throng; Soon you’ll gaze on Christ, your Saviour, Seated on His great white throne. Soon thy King and Saviour shall The crown of life award to thee; Soon you’ll hear His joyous greeting, “Come and dwell for aye with me.” [page 13]
Wrapt in the misty veil of years, With the darkness round my head, I call up dear departed faces Of the absent, loved and dead. Memory opens wide her gates, That I may tread her stately halls, And view again the pictures bright, That beautify her lofty walls. I see each long remembered path, The dear familiar haunts of yore, With buoyant step and spirit light, I tread again my native shore. I see the quaint old home again, Round which the sunbeams linger long, Where fair, fresh flowers their fragrance shed, And birds carolled loud their songs. I see my mother’s loving face, I hear her gentle voice again, Telling of a Saviour’s dying love, And of a Father’s home above. [page 14] Ah, mother! dearest of earthly friends, Enshrined within the heart, thou art, Even now, thy spirit seemeth near, To cheer my lonely stricken heart. Fond memories how they crowd upon me, Like spring’s soft vernal showers; And my heart in silent sorrow Sighs for childhood’s happy hours. Loved ones—best of earth and dearest— Have long since slept within the tomb, And I, a poor wanderer wearied, Hope in heaven to meet them soon. Yes, a voice within is whispering, Of endless life without alloy— Of fond reunion with the loved ones In our Father’s home on high.
MY MOTHER’S GRAVE.
In the old churchyard rest peacefully, The sunbeams on a grassy mound, ’Neath which my dearest earthly friend, A resting place hath found. [page 15] The drooping willow shades the spot, There birds sing their first lay, And there, in soothing loveliness, Flowers bloom and fade away. There—there with anguish wild and deep, We laid the lov’d one down to sleep, While angels o’er her precious dust, Their watchful vigils ever keep. In years gone by, with troubled soul, I oft the sacred spot have sought, To tell in prayer to mother’s God, The sorrows of my lonely lot. Tho’ far from this lov’d spot I’ve strayed, To seek a home beyond the seas, I oft to it across the pathless deep, Am borne on memory’s gentle breeze. Blow gently, gales, around this hallowed spot Come not ye sweeping tempests nigh, And softly o’er my mother’s sleeping dust, Ye winds your mournful requiem sigh. [page 16]
THE EARLY LOST.
I saw thee in life’s gay morn, A flower of richest form, When in thy veins the young life blood, Flowed gently deep and warm. When love and hope entwined thy brow, With cherished hopes of life, When in thy cup of earthly bliss were found, No drops of care or strife. I little though that one so fair— So full of life and joy, So soon should bid to home and friends, A last, a long “good bye.” So soon should sink beneath the blast, And quit life’s devious way, So soon thy blooming, sprightly form, Should mingle with its native clay. Long ere the morn of life was pat, Had sunk thy fair young sun, Long ere the noon of life was reached, Thy earthly race was run. [page 17] Now sorrowing friends oft drop the tear O’er thy lovely place of rest, While faith beholds thy spirit pure, Among the good and blest.
THE BLIND GIRL.
I cannot see fair nature now, The handiwork of God; I cannot see the mountain path, I oft in childhood trod. I cannot see the winding stream, That glides by my old home; My eyes see not the sunset grand, Nor night’s bright sparkling dome. I cannot see the flowers I love, In all their gorgeous splendor bright, Summer’s sunny skies, Autumn’s fading lines, Alike are now to my dimmed sight. I cannot see the faces sweet, Of friends I prize most dear, Time’s carving hand shall work on them, Unnoticed now by me. [page 18] I cannot tell when lines of care Are traced upon their brows; I cannot tell when smiles of joy Light up their faces now. Dark, dark to me is life’s rough vale, Alone I seem its maze to tread; Yet not alone, for Christ is here— The unseen friend is ever near. Yes, I’ve a joy, a glorious hope That smooths the rugged way; A joy that sweetens every cup, And lends a cheering ray. This is my joy the first sweet face I’ll see, with vision full restored Will be the mild and blessed one Of Christ, my risen Lord. Long, long methinks, I’ll gaze upon That face of tenderest love; Long on his transforming glory look, Nor e’er my eyes remove. And I shall see the loved ones too, Amid the angelic throng; Where sorrow ne’er can cloud their brows Nor check their happy songs. [page 19] And I shall roam by streamlets pure, ’Neath cloudless skies, ’mid fadeless flowers: Oh joy! when next on these I gaze, ’Twill be in Eden’s happy bowers. Father, smile on Thy blind child, Since o’er me thou hast breathed the name; Teach me to yield obedience meek, And acquiesce to love’s sweet claim.
BLESSED ARE THEY
Blessed are they, who in the steps Of the great Redeemer tread, Who, as beacon lights in this dark world, Show forth his mind in word and deed. Blessed are they that satisfy The hungry, thirsty poor, That to the stranger, lone and sad, For shelter open wide the door. Blessed are they that o’er the coach Of suffering sorrow bend; Whose hearts go forth in sympathy, To those in prison bound. [page 20] Blessed are they who stoop to rise The crushed ones from the mire of sin; Christ-like, who lead the lost sheep back, The fold of God to dwell within. Blessed are they—the voice of Christ, Shall on the judgment morn declare, Who work His work with single eye, And charity’s pure spirit bear. Blessed are they who yearn o’er souls, Lost in the gloom of nature’s night, Who lead the wanderers back to Him Who sheds o’er them celestial light. Blessed are they—for as the brightness That spreads the glorious firmament o’er As the jewels glittering on night’s fair brow, They’ll shine for ever, evermore.
’Tis Spring again, fair glorious Spring In all her budding, blushing charms, She is smiling over hill and vale, And stretching out its blooming arms. [page 21] Gone are the howling wintry blasts, That long have swept the landscape o’er, Sweet Spring, with balmy breeze invites The opening bud and blushing flower. Through Canada’s fair and fertile plains, Ooze gently on the murmuring rills, And basking ’neath the sunbeam’s smile, Behold the green and verdant hills. The feathered songsters from afar, Have lingered long ’mid southern bowers, Return with gay and blithsome notes, To cheer the coming summer hours. The flowers, bright children of the soil, In variegated beauty bloom, And waft on every passing breeze The odour of their rich perfume. All nature radiant is with joy, The green-robed earth, the azure sky, Proclaim in accents loud and long, The praise of Him who reigns on high. A thousand welcomes, lovely Spring, Smiling o’er hill and plain, In all thy budding, blushing bloom, We hail thee to our land again. [page 22]
The Autumn winds sigh mournfully, O’er this fair, lovely land, All nature tells us that ere long Old Winter here will stand. The withering leaves are falling fast, Before the dying year, Emblematic of the state to which Mankind draws hourly near. Summer is past, so bright and fair, The harvest, too, is o’er, And howling blasts crush down the flowers, That short in beauty bloomed before. E’en thus the mortal man decays, From hour to hour, and day to day, As falling leaves and fading flowers, We wither, droop, and fade away. The Autumn tells with warning voice, That time is passing fast, And bids us hasten to prepare For our eternal rest. [page 23] Thrice happy pilgrims! who can say When the summer of life is past, Come Autumn winds, I fear ye not, I on my Saviour rest.
Who in the days of infancy, Watched o’er my helpless form? Who have me more of earthly good, Than He possessed at life’s first dawn? My Saviour. Who kept my erring, wandering feet, In the slipp’ry paths of youth? Who taught me from His precious word, Precepts of love and truth? My Saviour. Who sought the lost sheep, sorrowing, That from the Shepherd’s care did stray, Happiness to seek in folly’s path, Joy in death’s broad crowded way? My Saviour. [page 24] Who bore the wanderer back to God, In his arms of tenderest love? Who bade the angel throngs rejoice, And swell their notes in heaven above. My Saviour. Who gave the peace—peace vainly sought, From earthly streams, from worldy joys, Peace, that the world with all its arts, Cannot within my soul destroy? My Saviour. Who gave me grace to follow Him, In life’s straight narrow way? Who in my weakness perfected strength, And grace supplied for every day? My Saviour. Who sought my heart, to stay itself, On Him to trust, and never fear? Who, when the storm of sorrow lowered, Whispered, “Be not afraid, for I am near?” My Saviour. [page 25] Who, day by day, is teaching me, New lessons oh His love? Who leads my soul from height to height, And fits it for the rest above? My Saviour. Who faithful is my soul to keep, Through all the changing scenes to come? Who though this dark an howling waste, Shall guide me safe to His loved home? My Saviour. Who’ll bear me up when nature fails, Over death’s dark and troubles stream? Who’ll buoy my sinking soul through floods, To where eternal glory beams? My Saviour. Who’ll lead me by life’s river pure, Amid the shining, ransoming throng? Who’ll be my theme of joyous praise, Throughout eternal ages long? My Saviour. [page 26]
TO AN ALBUM.
Dear book, wherein I often view The faces of the loved and true, With whom I’ve wiled sweet hours away, And held sweet converse by the way. Where are the friends whose silent forms, Enclosed are within thy bonds, Have they all gone—I left to mourn? And wander on life’s way alone. Yes, some to heavenly homes have gone, Their work on earth is finished and well done, And some are travelling yet in life’s rough way, And hope bespeaks for all a happy meeting day Dear Album! of no intrinsic worth art thou, That I so fondly o’er thee bend, It is fond memory that gives back the sigh, For each beloved, departed friend, once nigh. [page 27]