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DEATH OF THE NEW-BAPTIZED.
“ The dew of Thy birth is of the womb of the morning."
What purer brighter sight on earth, than when
The Sun looks down upon a drop of dew, Hid in some nook from all but Angels' ken,
And with his radiance bathes it through and through,
Then into realms too clear for our frail view Exhales and draws it with absorbing love ?
And what if Heaven therein give token true Of grace
that new-born dying infants prove, Just touched with JESUS' light, then lost in joys above ?
“Post et ridere cæpi ; dormiens primo, deinde vigilans.”- August. Confess. 1. 8.
TEARS from the birth the doom must be
Of the sin-born-but wait awhile, Young mother, and thine eye shall see
The dawning of the first soft smile.
It comes in slumber, gently steals
O’er the fair cheek, as light on dew : Some inward joy that smile reveals ;
Sit by and muse ; such dreams are true.
* For this poem the Author is indebted to a dear friend.
Closed eyelids, limbs supine, and breath
So still, you scarce can calm the doubt If life can be so like to death
'Tis life, but all of earth shut out.
'Tis perfect peace ; yet all the while
O'er marble brow, and dimpled chin Mantles and glows that radiant smile,
Noting the spirit stirred within.
Oh dim to this the flashing ray,
Though dear as life to mother's heart, From waking smiles, that later play ;
In these earth claims the larger part.
'Tis childish sport, or frolic mirth,
Or the fond mother's blameless guile, Or glittering toy,—some gaud of earth, That stirs him to that
Or if in pensive wise it creep,
With gradual light and soberer grace, Yet shades of earthly sorrow sleep,
Still sleep upon his beauteous face.
But did the smile disclose a dream
Of bliss that had been his before ? Was it from heaven's deep sea a gleam
Not faded quite on earth's dim shore ?
Or told some Angel from above
Of glories to be his at last,
His labours done-his perils past ?
Or, thought of trial for her breast,
Did the mild spirits whisper then, “ From the Baptismal Fount, O blest,
Thou shalt be ours, dear child, again?
“ Thou shalt be ours, and heaven be thine,
Thy victory without peril given ; Sent a brief while on earth to shine,
And then to shine a light in heaven.
“ And her that folds thee now so warm,
And haply thinks’twere death to part, Her shall a holier love inform,
A clearer faith enlarge her heart.”
With eager speed they ready make
Soft bosom and safe arm, As though such burthen once to take
A blessing were and charm.
And ever as with hastening wing
His little life glides on, By power of that first wondrous spring
To all but babes unknown,
Easier each hour the task will grow,
To name the unfolding flower, By plumage and by song to know
The nestling in his bower.
Oh, while your hearts so blithely dance
With frail fond hopes of earth, Will
ye not cast one onward glance To the true heavenly birth ?
“God speed the time When Spirits pure, to trace The hues of a more glorious prime,
Shall lean from their high place,