THY dimpled girls and rosy boys|
Rekindle in thy heart the joys
That bless'd thy tender years:
Unheeded fleet the hours away;
For, while thy cherubs round thee play,
New life thy bosom cheers.
Once more, thou tell'st me, I may taste,
Ere envious time this frame shall waste,
My infant pleasures flown.
Ah! there's a ray, of lustre mild,
Illumes the bosom of a child,
To age, alas! scarce known.
Not for my infant pleasures past
I mourn; those joys which flew so fast,
They too had many a stain;
But for the mind, so pure and light,
Which made those joys so fair, so bright,
I sigh, and sigh in vain.
Well I remember you, blest hours!
Your sunbeams bright, your transient showers-
Thoughtless I saw you fly;
For distant ills then caus'd no dread,
Nor cared I for the moments fled,
For memory call'd no sigh.
Fond parents swayed my every thought;
No blame I feared, no praise I sought,
But what their love bestowed:
Full soon I learn'd each meaning look;
Nor e'er the angry glance mistook
For that where rapture glowed.
Whene'er night's shadows call'd to rest,
I sought my father, to request
His benediction mild:
A mother's love more loud would speak,
With kiss on kiss she'd print my cheek,
And bless her darling child.
Thy lightest mists and clouds, sweet sleep!
Thy purest opiates thou dost keep,
On infancy to shed.
No guilt there checks thy soft embrace,
And not e'en tears and sobs can chase
Thee from an infant's bed.
The trickling tears which flow'd at night,
Oft hast thou stay'd, 'till morning light
Dispell'd my little woes.
So fly before the sunbeam's power
The remnants of the evening shower
Which wet the early rose.
Farewell, bless'd hours! full fast ye flew,
And that which made your bliss so true
Ye would not leave behind.
The glow of youth ye could not leave;
But why, why cruelly bereave
Me of my artless mind?
Childhood's unwrinkled front so fair,
So smooth, so free from touch of care,
Must feel the hand of age:
But can no power preserve the soul
Unharm'd by pleasure's soft control,
Nor rent by passion's rage?
The changes which o'ertake our frame,
Alas! are emblems of the same
Which on the mind attend.
Yet who reviews the course he has run,
But thinks were life once more begun,
Unspotted it should end?
Fond Mother! hope thy bosom warms
That on the prattler in thy arms
Heaven's choicest gifts will flow.
Thus let thy prayer incessant rise
To Him who, thron'd above the skies,
Can feel for man below.
"O! Thou, whose view is ne'er estrang'd
From innocence, preserve unchang'd
Through life my darling's mind;
Unchang'd in truth and purity,
Still fearless of futurity,
Still artless, though refin'd.
"As oft his anxious nurse hath caught
And sav'd his little hand that sought
The bright, but treacherous, blaze;
So let fair Wisdom keep him sure
From glittering vices which allure,
Through life's delusive maze.
"Oh! may the ills which man enshroud,
As shadows of a transient cloud,
But shade, not stain my boy.
Then may he gently drop to rest,
Calm as a child by sleep oppress'd
And wake to endless joy."
* "rosy boys" - If this is his family, his second son was born 3 Jan 1821.