Poems 401–425

 

 

401 To Mr. and Mrs.
(They Know Who)
Written on the Completion of Their Twenty-First Year of Membership in the Church

What of twenty-one years? Shall we think it a stage
At which to consider ourselves free?— “Of age”?
Or do we more properly call twenty-one,
A term of minority merely begun?

You’ve just entered the school as novitiates now, 5
And the wreath of probation encircles your brow;
But you’ve much to encourage and strengthen the heart
That in twenty-one years, you’ve secured a good start.
You have millions of years yet, in which to improve;
Then onwardly, upwardly, steadily move. 10
We should never presume on our being of age,
So long as the powers of darkness, we wage
With the grace and the wisdom our Father may loan,
Instead of abilities wholly our own.

Each morning and evening for blessings we crave, 15
And acknowledge dependence for all that we have—
That we are but children, we willingly own,
And with strength insufficient for walking alone;
For an hour—for a moment, we’d tremble to spare
Our Father’s protection and fostering care. 20

We’ll not boast of our years, while we’ve nothing to show
Of a fund self-possess’d we can use and bestow—
While, except by gratuity, subject to fail
Of the bread we partake—of the breath we inhale.

What of twenty-one years?—If they’re squander’d away, 25
In a balance against us, they’ll heavily weigh;
The result of the manner each hour is applied,
In the great day of reck’ning, we’ll have to abide.

All these twenty-one years joined with twenty-one score,
Are no more than a moiety of what is in store, 30
Of the boundless eternities yet to be known,
With additional knowledge, eternally strown.

composed 27 April 1868
published in Deseret News, 6 May 1868

 

402 Hymn
for the 24th of June, 1868

Be cheer’d, O Zion—cease to weep:
Heber we deeply loved:
He is not dead—he does not sleep—
He lives with those above.

His flesh was weary; let it rest 5
Entombed in mother Earth,
Till Jesus comes—when all the bless’d,
To life will be brought forth.

His mighty spirit, pure and free
From every bond of earth, 10
In realms of immortality,
Is crowned with spotless worth.

He lives for Zion:—he has gone
To plead her right’ous cause,
Before the High and Holy One— 15
Let all the Saints rejoice.

Let wives and children humbly kiss
The deep afflicting rod:
A Father to the fatherless,
God is the widow’s God.

composed ca. 24 June 1868
published in Deseret News, 1 July 1868

 

403 The Good Boy

When Willey was a little boy,
He learn’d to read and spell:
He always went in time to school,
And got his lessons well.

What his dear mother bid him do 5
He never fail’d to try,
He never spoke a naughty word,
And never told a lie.

And when he grew to be a man,
Good people lov’d him well; 10
And of his kind and noble deeds,
The little children tell.

God lov’d him too; and when he died,
He took him up above;
And plac’d him in a happy home, 15
Where all is peace and love.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 15 July 1868

 

404 To a Star

Little star, that shines so bright
In the darkness of the night;
Like a burning lamp on high—
Like a jewel in the sky.

When the sun has gone to rest 5
Down behind the distant West;
Then your kind and gentle light
Sheds a beauty on the night.

Though your light is but a spark
When it twinkles in the dark; 10
Oft the tiny spark will show
Little children where to go.

Now I wonder if you keep
Watching o’er me when I sleep;
When I lie upon my bed, 15
Are you shining over head?

published in Juvenile Instructor, 1 August 1868

 

405 The Full Moon

The sky is lovely and serene,
No cloud upon its face is seen
While here and there our eyes behold
A tiny streak of shining gold.

The sun is sinking in the west— 5
The little birds have gone to rest—
The shades of night will gather soon,
But yonder comes the bright full moon!

She comes, but not with burning rays—
She comes, but not with dazzling blaze— 10
She comes to cheer us with her light;
We love the moon, the queen of night.

Amid its pure and genial glow
The plants and blossoms richer grow;
Its silver rays their lustre shed 15
Where’er we look—where’er we tread.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 1 October 1868

 

406 “O God of life and glory”

O God of life and glory,
Hear Thou a people’s prayer:
Bless, bless our prophet Brigham,
And let him, Thy fullness share.
He is Thy chosen servant, 5
To lead Thine Israel forth;
Till Zion, crown’d with joy, shall be
A praise in all the earth.

He draws from Christ, the Fountain
Of everlasting truth, 10
The wise and prudent counsels
Which he gives to age and youth.
Thyself in him reflected,
Through mortal agency—
He is Thy representative, 15
To set Thy people free.

Thou richly hast endow’d him
With wisdom’s bounteous store;
And Thou hast made him mighty,
By Thy own almighty power, 20
O, let his life be precious—
Bless Thou, his brethren, too,
Who firmly join him side by side—
Who’re true as he is true.

Help him to found Thy kingdom 25
In majesty and power:
With peace in every palace,
And with strength in every tow’r.
And when Thy chosen Israel
Their noblest strains have sung: 30
The swelling chorus then shall be,
Our prophet, Brigham Young.

published in Deseret News, 14 October 1868

 

407 Santa Claus

Remember your time honor’d laws,
Kind master of the merry glee:
Prepare your gifts, good Santa Claus,
And hang them on the Christmas tree.

And where no Christmas trees are found, 5
With liberal hand your gifts distill;
The bags and stockings hanging round,
Great Santa Claus, be sure to fill.

Untie your purse—enlarge your heart—
O, do not pass one single door; 10
And in your gen’rous walk impart
Your comforts to the sick and poor.

When eyes are watching for the morn,
In humble hut and cottage too;
How disappointed and forlorn, 15
If missed, dear Santa Claus, by you.

Go all the rounds of baby-hood.
And bless and cheer the hearts of all
The “little folks,” and please be good
To those who’re not so very small.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 15 December 1868

 

408 Tribute to the Memory
of Miss St. Clair

Thou art gone!—thou lovely stranger—
Gone in youth and beauty too!
Gone when life, in bright perspective,
Spread its sunbeams to thy view.

Early trained in her profession, 5
By artistic impulse moved;
Here she found a land of strangers—
Here, by strangers was beloved.

Cast in nature’s mould of beauty,
With a lovely face and form; 10
God had highly, nobly gifted
Her with intellectual charms.

Dignified and unassuming
In her manner—free and chaste;
Never, never from our memories 15
Will her image be erased.

Long we battled the destroyer—
Prayed and struggled for her life;
But the jewel has departed—
Death has closed the lingering strife. 20

Though the bloom of health had faded,
Ere she drew the parting breath—
Though disease her form has wasted,
She is beautiful in death.

Soon they’ll bear the precious casket 25
To the silent tomb, to lay
In the care of guardian angels,
Till the resurrection day.

How she loved her “little sisters”!
How their tender hearts will mourn, 30
When they hear the solemn tidings,
“She will never more return!”

Gracious God, to her fond mother,
Thy consoling grace impart;
And in this, his sad bereavement, 35
Soothe her father’s aching heart.

Thou hast taken her, in mercy,
From the evil yet to come;
And in Thy celestial kingdom,
She will find a glorious home.

composed 24 January 1869
published in Deseret News, 3 February 1869

 

409 The Gentile’s Queries
The Saint’s Reply

Lady, ’tis strange! How could you leave
Your home, so lov’d—so dear—
Fond, loving hearts that hourly grieve;
To dwell with Mormons here?

Why leave refinement’s choicest courts, 5
Where noblest feelings stir’d;
To mingle in the common sorts
Of this low Mormon herd?

Why leave affection’s cradled shrine
Where kindness never tires— 10
Where gems of virtue brightly shine;
To dwell in Mormon fires?

The Saint’s Reply.

Hush, stranger, hush: those words of gall
Are not for me to hear:
Believe me, such expressions fall 15
Like lava on my ear.

’Tis true, I left fond hearts and dear
A lov’d and beauteous home;
But I am blest in being here
And wish my friends to come. 20

For here the richest fountain flows
From heav’n’s celestial sphere—
The highest boon that God bestows
On man, is prosper’d here.
n.d.

 

410 Elegy
Written for Little Miss Charlotte Talula

Little Mamie has departed
To a brighter, better sphere:
Little Lula, heavy-hearted,
Mourns the loss of Mamie dear.

These dear children, pure and guileless, 5
And to nature’s promptings, true;
Deeply, fondly lov’d each other—
Lov’d as holy beings do.

Oft they ate and drank together,
Full of innocence and love, 10
With their eyes as brightly beaming,
As the shining stars above.

Often have they joined their voices,
And with bird-like sweetness sung;
While their young hearts, gay and joyous, 15
Rival’d music of the tongue.

But dear Mamie’s voice no longer,
Falls on Lula’s list’ning ears!
Lula’s heart is full of sorrow,
And her eyes are wet with tears. 20

When she hears a tiny foot-step
Lightly tripping in the hall;
How her heart beats! Is it Mamie?
No; she does not come at all.

Kindest friends, to comfort Lula 25
Tell her, Mamie lives above,
In a land of light and beauty—
In a land of light and love.

There she mingles with the angels,
In a sinless, sacred place, 30
And with pure and holy rapture,
Sees the Savior’s smiling face.

composed February 1869
published in Deseret News, 3 March 1869

 

411 Angel Whisperings
to the Dying Child

Darling, we are waiting for thee,
Hasten, now:
Go with us, where wreaths are twining
For thy brow.

In the innocence of childhood, 5
Thou wilt be
Hail’d with gentle shouts of welcome,
And of glee.

Joyous cherubs wait thy coming
Up above; 10
Ready now to crown and bless thee,
With their love.

Loved one, haste—delay no longer—
With us go
From a clime that intermingles 15
Joy and woe.

Go with us to heav’nly arbors,
Deck’d with flow’rs;
Where ambrosial fragrance, streaming,
Fills the bow’rs. 20

Thou art pure—by earth’s corruptions
Undefiled;
From the ills of life, we’ll take thee,
Sinless child.

Friends will mourn, but this bereavement 25
They’ll endure;
Knowing that their cherished darling
Is secure.

Like a rosebud yet unopen’d,
Thou shalt bloom; 30
Where no blight shall mar thy freshness,
And perfume.

Child, we’re waiting now to bear thee
To our home,
Full of life—of love and beauty, 35
Darling, come.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 13 March 1869

 

412 Beauty Everywhere

There’s beauty in the human face—
Beauty of motion, form and grace—
Beauty of innocence and youth—
Beauty of lips that speak the truth.

There’s beauty in the lucid stream 5
That sparkles with the sun’s bright beam;
There’s beauty in the clouds that fly
In fleecy sheets across the sky.

There’s beauty in the tiny wave,
Where moving waters gently lave; 10
There’s beauty in the dashing flow,
When cataracts melt in foam below.

There’s beauty in the grassy blade
That decks the spacious summer glade;
And in the wild flower’s peerless bloom, 15
That fills the air with sweet perfume.

There’s beauty in the gentle rain
That waters garden, field and plain;
And in the fiercer storm that beats,
And sends its torrents through the streets. 20

There’s beauty in the aerial bow,
Which God has set above, to show
The world will not be drowned again,
While on its surface men remain.

There’s beauty in the lightning’s blaze 25
And in the moon’s pale borrow’d rays;
There’s beauty in the twilight hour,
When night’s brown tinge begins to lower.

There’s beauty in the starry night,
And in the morning’s golden light; 30
There’s beauty in the sun’s first rays,
And in its noontide burnish’d blaze.

The stars that twinkle in the sky,
Are gems of beauty placed on high;
Go where you will—look here and there, 35
And beauty meets you everywhere.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 3 July 1869

 

413 Dedication Hymn

From God, the Source of life and grace,
Our streams of blessings flow;
This day, His holy name we praise
And grateful thanks bestow.

Thou God of truth and righteousness, 5
In faith we ask of Thee,
Preserve this humble edifice
From all impurity.

Here let thy holy Spirit rest
Without a chain to bind: 10
May all who enter in, be blest
In body and in mind.

Here may th’ influence of thy love,
Devotion’s pulses fire;
And may we strive in every move, 15
To lift our natures higher.

May union in this Hall abide
With God-like strength and skill:
And Father, let thy wisdom guide,
And each department fill. 20

We dedicate this House to Thee,
As love and labor’s bower:
May Zion’s welfare ever be
Its ruling motive power.

And here may thought and speech be free 25
Instruction to impart,
Commercial and financially—
In science and in art.

In works of mercy, faith and love,
To banish want and woe, 30
The records of this House shall prove
We’re neither slack nor slow.

Where love and duty mark the way,
Improving heart and head,
Onward and upward day by day, 35
We’ll move with tireless tread.

O God, our strength—our great reward,
Speed Thou, the glorious time
When “Holiness unto the Lord,”
Shall mark each grand design.

composed 5 August 1869

 

414 The Future

Children, a mighty future
Is nearing up to you,—
A future full of labor,
Of trust and honor too.

Prepare yourselves for meeting 5
Its many great demands—
To fill its just requirements,
Of head and heart and hands.

Like bees that gather honey,
From every tiny flower, 10
You now should treasure wisdom
From every passing hour.

To ’stablish wisdom’s habits,
While in your early prime,
Will prove a world of profit, 15
For all your coming time.

If you preserve your bodies
In purity and health,
’Twill be far greater riches
Than stores of golden wealth. 20

Early to bed at night time,
Early in morn to rise,
Will make you bright and active
And healthy, strong and wise.

Shun every path of evil; 25
Avoid each vulgar word;
And let no mean expression
From you be ever heard.

Choke every selfish feeling;
Keep envious thoughts subdued; 30
To rise in honor’d greatness,
You must be greatly good.

The path that leads to honor,
To peace and happiness,
Is that of love and duty,— 35
Of trust and usefulness.

Have eye upon the future,
In all you say and do:
’Tis coming, coming, coming,—
The future comes to you.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 6 November 1869

 

415 Annie’s Sympathy

Little Annie clung to her mother’s side,
And the tear-drops stood in her eye,
As she saw the earth wrapp’d in its wintry pride,
And heard the cold blast move by.

The mother said, as she kiss’d her child, 5
“My darling has nothing to fear;
Though the storm without is fierce and wild,
It never can enter here.

Our house is beautiful, nice and warm,
With the fire’s bright cheerful blaze: 10
Your father provides for you well; like a charm
You shall spend the wintry days.”

“Yes, mother, your child knows your words are true,”
The dear loving Annie replied:
“I have all that I need,—I have father and you, 15
By whom every want is supplied.

But I’m thinking of poor little Carrie and Ned:
Their house is so shabby and old,—
Their mother is sick and their father dead,—
That I think they are hungry and cold. 20

They live in that house by the big tall oak
Which the frost and winds have made bare;
I’ve watched the chimney and see no smoke
Rise up on the stormy air.

No kind father’s footsteps are ever heard 25
On that threshold where orphans tread—
No father’s lips with a loving word,
Nor his hand to provide them bread.”

This short speech was made without guile or art;
It was love’s sweet, innocent strain; 30
The appeal was made to a mother’s heart,
And it was not made in vain.

The mother in haste envelop’d her form,
With sympathy warm in her breast;
Kiss’d the daughter good-bye, and braved the storm, 35
To rescue the poor distress’d.

Her purse was large and her hands not slack,
And the old house was fill’d with joy;
And Annie’s heart, when her mother came back,
Beat with pleasure without alloy.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 20 November 1869

 

416 Good Night to 1869

Good night, old year—on Time’s swift train you go
To swell the mighty volume of the past,
While bidding you good night, I take the hint
That your whole length is added to my years,
And age is moving onward in your wake. 5

Is age unwelcome? Never, when it comes
Enriched with stores of Godlike wisdom, yet
I fain would dodge its imbecilities.
Years in their passage bear me to the grave.
The grave? No: In the grave, the mortal part 10
The part which clothes my spirit now, shall rest;
But my own real self will still exist
In life and being in a brighter sphere,
And triumph o’er the fatal grasp of death .

Then, while my tabernacle moulders in 15
The grave, and while decomposition’s true
Artistic process shall eradicate
The volatile, gross elements, as earth,
Fire, water, and whatever particles
Belong unto the vegetable and 20
The min’ral kingdoms, and when disengaged,
Each to its own, shall fully be restored;
The germ, the pure eternal portion, that
Which is invisible to mortal eyes,
Yet now combined with gross material, 25
Is part and portion of the human form—
The incorruptible, enduring part,
Which, at the great archangel’s trumpet call,
Will reawaken in its perfect form,
Enrob’d in glorious immortality; 30
This will in mother Earth’s kind bosom sleep.

Not one iota—not one particle
Of this chaste germ will be transfer’d or lost,
Or through transmission pass to other forms,
But will remain the same, when all alloy— 35
All earthly substances have been dissolved
In the cold chemic crucible of death .
And this is what the resurrection’s power
Re-animates and calls forth from the tomb;
When with the spirit it shall reunite, 40
’Twill be a perfect, glorious being—free
From the whole catalogue of human ills
That blood inherits, and will then portray
A type of manhood of the finest mould,
And fitted to associate with the Gods. 45

Nature, in all her laws is sternly just.
’Tis true, she loans on trust, but, in due time,
Exacts full payment. On this principle,
Our bodies have incorporated from
The earth, of what pertains to it, to hold, 50
By force of natural, eternal laws—
Laws of attraction and affinity,
Our spirits here: or else, they would return
Instinctively to their primeval home,
Without fulfilling the grand purpose which 55
Th’ Almighty Father had designed for man.

To every law, both human and divine,
Rewards and punishments have been affix’d.
God has reveal’d to us a law whereby
We may come forth and hail the morning of 60
The earliest resurrection, and by which
We may attain unto the richest, best
Of every gift, the gift of Endless Lives—
To live where man will honor wedded life,
In household form, and propagate his kind— 65
United here by the great sealing power
By which the holy marriage tie on earth,
Is recognized and legal in the heavens.

And through obedience to every law
Which God reveals, men become kings and priests, 70
And women queens and priestesses, to reign,
And to officiate in holy things.

Years come and go, as doors on hinges turn,
With little seeming consequence to those
Who know not God—that He is speaking—that 75
His priesthood with its powers, is on the earth—
That knowledge of the future is reveal’d,
And the true path to lead man up to God.
To such, the heavens are closed—the Bible sealed;
And they reject the truthful monitor, 80
The holy Spirit, the bright telescope
Which points the vision to eternity,
And shows, with never failing certainty,
The present and the past: that accurate
Electric wire—the telegraphic line 85
Communicating ’twixt the earth and heaven,
Revealing life and immortality;
Yes, life and immortality! What words
Of sacred import to the human heart!
An import that outweighs the greatest weight 90
Of this world’s greatness—fills the soul of man
With joy that’s inexpressible, and nerves
His arms with more than mortal energy—
Fans in his breast a beam of heavenly light
That reaches upward to the throne of God— 95
Makes him impervious to wrong, and steels
His will as flint to do what duty bids,
E’en tho’ vile falsehood’s very dregs are pour’d
From Pluto’s nether caldron’s hissing mouth.

Good night, old year—you’re going—go in peace 100
On Time’s grand register, file your report;
You’ll not misrepresent us. All we ask
Of Time—of Press—of tongue and pen is TRUTH.

composed ca. 31 December 1869
published in Deseret News, 12 January 1870

 

417 To the Sunbeam
[“O, beautiful sunbeam!”]

O, beautiful sunbeam!
We’re thankful for you;
Without your kind visits,
Pray, what should we do?

Thou life pulse of nature— 5
Promoter of health;
Inspiring all beauty—
Creating all wealth.

You draw forth the products
Of earth to our view; 10
They gather their sweetness,
And richness from you.

You polish the blossoms,
That gladden our sight;
Their beauty and fragrance, 15
Are formed by your light.

There’s life in your presence,
And strength in your wing;
You prompt the gay carol,
And music of Spring. 20

You dance on the hill top—
You glide o’er the lawn—
You warm up the breezes,
As summer comes on.

You sport on the lattice, 25
And enter the bowers;
You strengthen the fibres,
Of herbage and flowers.

You flit thro’ the window,
You creep on the walls; 30
Give joy to the parlors,
The kitchen and halls.

You give us the morning,
And day’s brilliant light;
And yours are the moon-beams 35
That cheer us at night.

Thou beautiful sunbeam!
More precious than dew,
You are richer than jewels—
We’re thankful for you.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 22 January 1870

 

418 To the Sunbeam
[“For your present example”]

For your present example—
Your future one, too,
“To the Sunbeam,” was written
Expressly for you.

Reflect on the sunbeam, 5
And each aim to be
A sunbeam of virtue,
And nobility.

Be ever like sunbeams,
To make all hearts glad— 10
To warm the cold bosom,
And cheer up the sad.

Like the sunbeam, be sportive
In innocent glee;
And try to be happy 15
Wherever you be.

As sunbeams of beauty,
Let God’s spirit shine
In your hearts and your faces,
With beauty divine. 20

Be upright and honest,
In work and in play;
Do good to each other
Whenever you may.

Be firm to your purpose, 25
In what you pursue;
Be sunbeams of honor
And excellence too.

As sons and as daughters
Of Zion, prepare, 30
In the work of redemption,
To do a great share.

As sunbeams, be useful,
And goodness distil;
That high posts of honor 35
And trust, you may fill.

Be sunbeams of truth, and
Be sunbeams of love;
And exhibit the wisdom
That comes from above.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 5 February 1870

 

419 Little Lucy

Look not to the grave for the lov’d one;
The beautiful one is not there;
It now shines in the mansions of beauty,
Far away from earth’s trouble and care.

She lives with the pure and the lovely 5
The noble, the good and the wise;
In the sunbeams of love and affection,
Where happiness beams from the skies.

O, why should she suddenly leave us?
O, wherefore so transient her stay? 10
She came, like an angel to cheer us,
And then like a flow’r, pass’d away.

By coming to earth, she inherits
Her birthright, her parents and home—
The gifts and the blessings of Priesthood 15
In eternity’s ages to come.

She has gained the dear, beautiful casket,
Which the grave will, ere long, purify,
To come forth in the first resurrection
And inhabit bright mansions on high.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 19 February 1870

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420 The Venerable Patriarch
John Young

Firm on the Rock of Ages—firm
In faith and hope and love,
A vet’ran of the cross has gone
To join the hosts above.

He’ll stand a noble witness there 5
For Zion’s cause below,
In God’s High Court of Justice, where
Appeals from earth must go.

He battled for the championship
Of Truth, and now he’s gone 10
To take the prize awarded him,
The prize he nobly won.

His days were fill’d with usefulness,
His life was full of years;
To him, the messenger of death 15
Brought no regret nor fears.

Peace to his ashes! “Dust to dust”
Is mortal nature’s doom:
The resurrection of the just,
Will soon unbolt his tomb. 20

Triumphant over sin and death,
On golden streets he’ll tread,
Array’d in royal robes, with crowns
Of honor on his head.

published in Deseret News, 4 May 1870

 

421 What Is, and What Is Not
for Woman

’Tis not for her to plough the deep,
And gather pearls from ocean’s bed;
Or scale the rugged mountain’s steep,
For laurel wreaths to deck her head.
She gathers pearls of other name 5
Than those the ocean’s bosom yields—
Fair laurels never known to fame,
She culls from wisdom’s golden fields:

’Tis not for her to face the foe
Amid the cannon’s thund’ring blaze; 10
Or shudder at the winds that blow
Tremendous gales in torrid seas.
But there are foes of other form—
Of other aspect, she should quell;
And whisper music to the storm, 15
When seas of passion rudely swell.

’Tis not for her to lead the van—
To be ensconced in Chair of State,
To legislate ’twixt man and man—
Nations and laws to regulate. 20
’Tis hers to fan the sacred fire
Of manhood’s true nobility—
The heart of nations to inspire
With patriotism and liberty.

’Tis hers, with heav’nly influence 25
To wield a mighty power divine—
To shield the path of innocence
And virtue’s sacred worth define.
’Tis hers to cultivate the germs
Of all the faculties for good, 30
That constitute the Godlike forms
Of perfect man and womanhood.

’Tis hers the sunbeam to sustain—
Amid misfortune’s chilling breath—
To silence grief—to solace pain— 35
To soothe and cheer the bed of death.
His pathway in the battle lies—
He should not fear the raging flood:
Give man the breast-plate courage plies,
But give to woman, fortitude.

published in Poems 2, 1877

 

422 A Gem

There’s a millionaire gem—one that gladdens the sight,
’Tis a gem that will never fade;
It is lustrous by day—it is lustrous by night—
The same both in light and shade.

This gem by each owner alone can be wrought: 5
In market it never is sold—
It no where in heav’n or on earth can be bought,
Or traffick’d like silver and gold.

It is not like a mushroom that hastily grows—
No enchantment can bring it forth; 10
Perseverance and patience at length disclose
Its beautiful form and worth.

Now, dear children, begin in your life’s early morn,
And with diligence, labor and care
Manufacture this excellent gem, and adorn 15
Yourselves with a beauty rare.

Unto every possessor this gem will impart,
Both in time and eternity,
Embellishments highly surpassing all art,
Its name is Integrity.

published in Juvenile Instructor, 9 July 1870

 

423 Song of a Missionary’s Children

The long, long time, dear father,
Since we have look’d on you;
Makes all the days seem longer—
The nights seem longer too.

While in a distant country, 5
Across the mighty sea;
We hope you’re feeling happy
Wherever you may be.

Our kind good mother teaches
Us how to pray for you, 10
When we kneel down together,
At night and morning too.

She says to distant nations,
By God’s command, you’re sent
To preach the glorious gospel, 15
And we must be content.

We pray that Jesus’ spirit
May ever fill your heart;
And give you light and knowledge,
To others to impart: 20

That thro’ your heav’nly counsel,
The humble may be blest—
The pure in heart directed,
To Zion in the West.

We pray that God will give you 25
Good health and appetite,
With wholesome food and clothing,
And quiet sleep at night.

When you are waiting dinner,
In homes across the sea— 30
When prattling stranger children
Are clinging to your knee;

While gently you caress them,
Do not your feelings roam,
With fatherly affection, 35
To your dear mountain home,

Where loving hearts are beating,
And pure as winter snow—
Where brightest eyes are beaming
With love’s deep filial glow? 40

Yet father—dearest father,
We do not—dare not pray
For your return to Zion
Till God shall name the day.

composed 2 September 1870
published in Juvenile Instructor, 3 September 1870

 

424 My Country—a Lamentation

1 Columbia, my country! The land of my birth and the boast of my
youthful pride!

2 My love for thee, mingled with the warm pulses of my childhood—
it was inherited from my noble ancestors who periled their lives and bravely fought for thy independence—it grew with my growth as a legitimate portion of my nature.

3 Thou hast been as a beacon of light to other nations—a palladium
of liberty and an asylum for the oppressed. Then thy broad bosom, warmed with compassion for the homeless—thou didst open wide thy heart to shelter persecuted outcasts from distant lands.

4 Thou didst choose wise men for statesmen—men with souls, who
were not greedy after selfish gain, but were true to thy interests, and held thy honor dearer than their life.

5 With them, thou didst establish a government on the grand platform
of civil and religious liberty, guaranteeing equal rights; and to procure its perpetuity, thou didst frame and bequeath a glorious and sacred Constitution, which was prompted by the inspiration of the Most High.

6 Thy standard was emblazoned with the insignia of peace; and on its
lofty spire which towered amid the skies, waved the glorious banner of freedom, which was unsoiled by the hand of oppression, and unstained with the blood of innocence.

7 Then, thy courts and seats of justice, and thy congress halls were
receptacles of trust and confidence.

8 Union and happiness pervaded thy interior, and a crown of glory
encircled thy brow; thy name was held in honor abroad: proud and haughty nations gazed with admiration at thy prosperity; they bowed respectfully to the noble magnanimity of thy character, and marveled at the harmonious workings of thine institutions.

9 Such thou wert as I remember thee; and then my young heart
swelled with joyous pride that I was an American citizen.

10 But alas! alas! a great change has come over thee: and now, with
subdued pride, I am forced to exclaim: “How is the mighty fallen!”

11 Where is thy Washington—thy Jefferson and thine Adams of
former years? Where now the respect and loyalty with which they adhered to, and honored the glorious Constitution?

12 When two of thy noblest sons—those whom God had raised up
to be benefactors of the age, were assassinated in Carthage jail; thou didst, not only forfeit thine own plighted faith to them, and complacently fold thy hands in silent sanction, but thou didst throw thy mantle of protection around the foul perpetrators of the horrid deed.

13 Alas! for thee, my Country! Inconsistency is glaring in thine acts—
with one hand thou dost extend liberty, and proffer protection to the negro in the South; while, with the other thou dost seize, and wrest from a portion of thy most loyal subjects who, after having been thrust from thy presence, have opened for thee a path in the desert; the dearest privileges and the most sacred rights conferred by the Goddess of Liberty.

14 There is no cloak for thy shame: The stain of innocent blood is on
thy armorial escutcheon—degeneracy is visibly depicted in thy countenance—rottenness is in thy bones—thy joints tremble by reason of weakness, and thou art terribly diseased in thine inward parts.

15 Thou hast even acknowledged thine own imbecility; for when a
portion of thine own children who had been cruelly persecuted and smitten, cried unto thee for help—humbly claiming thy parental protection, thou didst coldly and deliberately say to them, “Your cause is just, but I can do nothing for you.”

16 Tell it not in Europe—publish it not on the continent of Asia, lest
the monarchs of the world laugh, and the subjects of despots have thee in derision.

17 And yet, thou art not wholly fallen: To thine honor be it spoken:
thou hast a few, who, like the Daniel of old, boldly dare to stand up in defense of justice, and oppose the annihilation of peace and citizenship; and their names will be registered in the archives of the just.

18 My Country, O, my Country! my heart bleeds for thee—I mourn
thy corruption and degradation—thy glory has departed—thy fame is extinguished—thy peace and honor, swindled; and “the dear old flag” which once floated in glorious majesty, is now slowly and solemnly undulating at half mast, as a requiem of thy departed liberty, which thou hast sacrificed on the shrine of political emolument.

19 And now, mark it—write it with an iron pen—engrave it indelibly
in the rocks—a day of retribution awaits thee. Think not thou canst measure arms with the Almighty—think not thy strength sufficient to cope with Omnipotence.

composed September 1870
published in Poems 2, 1877

 

425 How ’70 Leaves Us and
How ’71 Finds Us

Time makes no pauses: Each incoming year
Must shoulder what its predecessor doffs.
This is an age of lightning, gas and steam—
An age of progress, energy and skill:
When man aspires to wield the elements 5
To his advantage.

Proud in his success,
He claims the honor of the triumph. God,
Source of all good—of wisdom, science, art,
Gets little credit for his gifts bestowed.
The intellectual progress of the age 10
Outstrips accountability; and men
Let fall the moral lever from their grasp;
And infidelity and wickedness
Keep even pace with march of intellect.
Respect for justice, truth, integrity 15
And honesty, at heavy discount stands.

The great hereafter, man’s eternal all,
Is by the wholesale on the altar laid!
For what? To gratify the passions, and
The eager—all engrossing thirst for gold. 20
Truth, honor, manhood and nobility—
True confidence, the royal pedestal
Of life’s choice blessing, social happiness,
With sweet affection’s fond endearments in
Domestic life—the bliss of loving and 25
Of being loved in faith and purity,
Are sacrificed to passion, and for wealth!

In this fast age of double-motive power,
Theft, murder, robbery, infanticide
And foeticide, foul crimes, ignore restraint; 30
While prostitution, life’s most damning sin,
Stalks forth in tolerating Christendom,
With sin’s infections, vile increase, despite
The many noble efforts to suppress it.
Woman now, in fearful numbers falls 35
A prey to man’s base passions—men who spurn
Pure matrimony’s sacred altar—men
Who perjure every holy vow: and yet
They boast of virtue, faith and sanctity.
Such are the men who would obliterate 40
The heav’n taught principle of woman’s right—
The universal right—not of a few
More favor’d ones; but sacred right of all,
To holy, honorable wedlock.

God
Has introduced the pattern; by His law 45
Women can fill the measure of their lives
In virtue, honor and respectability:
And to themselves, by holy rite reveal’d,
Secure in time, for all eternity,
Men who are true to nature and to God. 50

If those who’re advocating “Woman’s Rights,”
Will plead the right of wedlock for the sex
Till public sentiment shall guarantee,
What God and nature recognize her right,
The bonds of matrimony, legally 55
Performed, and sacredly respected, with
Virtue inviolate, they’ll win a meed
Of everlasting gratitude and praise.
War is comprised in the dark catalogue
Of growing evils. Europe’s purple streams 60
Now flowing, moan o’er Christian nations joined
In mutual slaughter—legal butchery!
Is this Christianity? Are these the fruits
Of the pure gospel of the Son of God?
Bogus Christianity and bogus faith! 65
Worse than alloy—’tis a base counterfeit
Of that establish’d by the Prince of Peace.
But wholesale murder, war, is much in vogue:
Who slaughters most, the brightest laurels gains;
And lightning messages with pride announce 70
“Brilliant success,” “Splendid victories.”
Poor fall’n humanity! Oh, how demoralized!

If man’s existence ended here—if this
Were all of life allotted; little would
It matter how or when it comes and goes, 75
And how ’tis husbanded: but this is but
A speck, compared with life hereafter; yet
’Tis freighted with eternal consequence.

In Utah God has formed a nucleus
Of peace and virtue—a pure government. 80
’Tis Heaven’s own kingdom—God himself the King.
It was forshadow’d in the visions of
The ancient prophets. Daniel saw it, and
Plainly predicted whence it would go forth
To conquer Satan’s reign and fill the earth, 85
Then wars shall cease, and men shall beat their swords
To plowshares, and to pruning hooks their spears;
And learn the cruel art of war no more.
Th’ Almighty God has said it, and the time,
His own set time has come; and He has made 90
His people’s feet fast in these mountain vales,
For this great, grand and glorious purpose which
Not all the powers of earth and hell combined
Can frustrate. God is at the helm, and He
Will have a tried and faithful people, who 95
Will do his bidding, and co-operate
With Him and with each other to sustain
His kingdom and inaugurate the reign
Of everlasting righteousness and peace.

composed 1870
published in Deseret News, 11 January 1871

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