Poems and Essays

by Joseph Howe




Oh! blame me not, Mary, for gazing at you,
    Nor suppose that my thoughts from the Preacher were straying.
Tho’ I stole a few glances—believe me ’tis true—
    They were sweet illustrations of what he was saying.

For, when he observed that Perfection was not
    To be found upon the Earth—for a moment I bent
A look upon you—and could swear on the spot,
    That perfection in Beauty was not what he meant.

And when, with emotion, the worthy Divine
    On the doctrine of loving our neighbors insisted,
I felt if their forms were as faultless as thine,
    I could love every soul of them while I existed.

And Mary, I’m sure ’twas the fault of those eyes—
    ’Twas the lustre of them to the error gave birth—
That, while he spoke of Angels that dwelt in the Skies,
    I was gazing with rapture at one upon Earth. [Page 124]