On the death of Mrs. N. P. Willis
In life's freshness, and its fulness,---
In thy womanhood's young bloom,
While thy brow was all unclouded
With a darkening ray of gloom,---
The Angel Death hath said to thee,
"Thy Father calls thee home."
And, as fades some lovely vision
In the morning's gathering light,
Or as sinks some unsphered radiance
From the starry crown of night,
Or as dies some burst of music,---
Thou hast vanished from our sight.
Far across the foaming waters,
From the country of thy birth,
From thy childhood's friends and memories,
From thy father's silent hearth,
A strange soil unveils its bosom,
And must clasp thee, earth to earth.
But the soft Spring sky bends o'er thee,
As thou goest to thy rest,
And Mount Auburn's green recesses
Soon in beauty will be drest;
And with waving leaves and blossoms,
Welcome in their lovely guest.
And when Summer all her glory
O'er that hallowed scene shall shed,
Then shall come the loved and living,
With hushed voice and noiseless tread;
And with tears bedew the flowers,
In that city of the dead.
There, where winds sigh through the pine trees,
Where the silver water flows;
Where the pale stars keep their vigils,
And the genial sunlight glows,
Oh, how calm will be thy slumber!
How I envy thy repose!
There, young mother,---with thy nursling
Safely pillowed on thy heart,
Safely shielded from the tempest,
From the poison and the dart,---
Ye will fade away together,
As the violets depart.
But not thus, oh gentle stranger,
Shall thy loved remembrance flee;
In the hearts where thou wast cherished,
The sweet memories of thee,
Like the evergreens above thee,
Fresh and beautiful shall be.