BETA

Do Not Weep.

I once was young, but now am old ; I once was fair, now gray ;1
A summer child, for I was born upon a summer day.2
Our home stood in a valley lone—it was an ancient hall3
With slanting roof, and gable sides, and ivy on the wall.4
Not more unruly sure was I than petted children are,5
Though I was nurtured with far more than usual love and care ;6
A faithful nurse watched over me from when I first saw light,7
And ceaseless was her tending love throughout the
night.
8
A picture hung within the hall—’twas of the Holy Child ;9
I used, as evening shadows fell, to think the blest One smiled ;10
And when with awe I told my nurse, she said, ‘ Remember this11
The gracious Saviour never smiles on those who do amiss.’12
Sometimes, with childish ills opprest—in frowardness or pain13
Recounting my imagined woes, ’ twas pleasant to complain ;14
By tender accents reassured— Be patient—do not weep ;15
Perchance the angels may come down with healing in your
sleep.’
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My heart received the portraiture, though oft it disappears,17
Reviving with the sacred warmth of penitential tears ;18
And at the solemn midnight hour bright visions still reveal19
The smile of bless ineffable whose influence I feel.20
As years bring sorrow in their train, dim smiles, and stifled
sighs
21
Imaginary grief dispelled by stern realities22
A haunting voice yet seems to say, Be patient—do not weep :23
Perchance the angels may come down with healing in your
sleep.’
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