The Poetical Works of Elizabeth Margaret Chandler/Reminiscence
Away and away to memory's land!
To seize the past with a daring hand,
And bear it back from oblivion's bowers,
To brighten again this dull world of ours.
There's many a walk beneath summer skies,
Starry and blue as some earthly eyes;
There's many an eve by the winter's hearth,
Sparkling all over with friendship and mirth.
There's many a ramble through wood and glen,
Away from the sight and the haunts of men;
There's climbing of rocks, and gathering flowers,
And watching the stream through summer showers.
There's many an hour that quickly went,
In the boughs of the old hill grape-vine spent;
There's many a ride, and many a walk,
And many a theme of friendly talk.
How freshly comes to the spirit back,
The merry light of its early track!—
But let it pass, for around my brow
Far deeper thoughts are gathering now.
I have learn'd too much of woe and wrong,
Of hearts all crush'd by oppression strong,
To deem the earth, as in other days,
A fairy theme for a poet's lays.
How may I linger within the bowers,
Bedight with memory's fairy flowers,
While woman's cry, as she drains the cup
Of her bitter lot, to the sky goes up?
How may I joy in my better fate,
While her heart is bleeding and desolate?—
Or give my thoughts to their blissful dreams,
While no bright ray on her darkness gleams?