Poems 426–450

426 A Winter Soliloquy

I hear—I see its tread as Winter comes—
Clad in white robes, how terribly august!
Its voice spreads terror—ev’ry step is mark’d
With devastation! Nature in affright,
Languid and lifeless, sinks before the blast. 5

Should nature mourn? No: gentle Spring, ere long,
Will reascend the desolated throne:
Her animating voice will rouse from death,
Emerging from its chains, more beauteous far,
The world of variegated Nature. 10

Not so with man—Rais’d from the lowly dust,
He blooms awhile; but when he fades, he sets
To rise no more—on earth no more to bloom!
Swift is his course and sudden his decline!
Behold, to-day, his pulse beat high with hope— 15
His arms extended for the eager grasp
Of pleasure’s phantom, fancy’s golden ken
Paints in a gilded image on his heart.
Behold, to-morrow where? Ah! who can tell?
Ye slumb’ring tenants, will not you reply? 20
No: from his bow, death has a quiver sent,
And seal’d your senses in a torpid sleep.
Then who can tell? The living know him not:
Altho’ perhaps, a friend or two, may drop
A tear, and say he’s gone—she is no more! 25

Hark! from on high a glorious sound is heard,
Rife with rich music in eternal strains.
The op’ning heavens, by revelation’s voice
Proclaim the key of knowledge unto man.

A Savior comes—He breaks the icy chain; 30
And man, resuscitated from the grave,
Awakes to life and immortality,
To be himself—more perfectly himself,
Than e’er he bloom’d in the primeval state
Of his existence in this wintry world.

published in Poems 2, 1877

427 Whom I Pity

I pity those who know no happiness,
But what the transient things of earth produce:
Whose servile minds, by close affinity,
Seem bound to the low sod on which they tread:
And whose unstable feelings, like the waves 5
Of ocean; rise and fall, and ebb and flow,
With every up and down—with ev’ry change
Of circumstance.—Whose present weal is the
Grand fulcrum, round which all their hopes and fears
Are moving unremittingly.—Whose joys 10
And sorrows may be measured by their loss
And gain of worldly substance; while their hearts,
So narrowly drawn up, and press’d into
The stinted centers of their narrow spheres;
Seem like the withered buds of Spring, too soon 15
Put forth, and smitten by th’ untimely frost.

I’ve wept o’er human suff’ring, when I’ve heard
My fellow creatures groan beneath the weight
Of bodily disease—when nature sank
Exhausted—when e’en life itself became 20
A load that press’d too heavily upon
The weak, disorder’d organs of the frame.

Such evils claim our sympathy; yet bear
No parallel to those disorders of
The human mind, which circumscribe to earth, 25
The sphere of human intellect: when thought,
Transfix’d to nether objects, never soars
Beyond the limits of the present life.

I’ve seen the young, with noble pow’rs of mind,
That should have reach’d to heav’n; low stooping down 30
In search of some forbidden key, t’ unlock
The glitt’ring heaps that Mammon’s coffers hold.
O yes, and I have seen the aged ones,
Upon whose heads the silver coronets,
With plain inscriptions, told their lengthen’d years 35
Were hov’ring o’er the margin of the grave;
Let go their hold of future blessedness,
To lay their trembling grasp more firmly on
The fleeting treasures of departing time.

If tears could ought avail—could tears prevent 40
Such strange perversions of the gifts bestow’d;
I would exclaim, like one of ancient time,
“Oh, that my head were waters, and my eyes
A fountain:” and I’d weep—yes, I would weep.
published in Poems 2, 1877

428 Eloquence
[expanded version]

There is an eloquence that breathes throughout
The world inanimate. There is a tone,
A silent tone of speech, that meets the heart
In whisperings pathetic, soft and sweet—
Like the enchantments of the night, which move 5
On slumber’s downy chariot wheels, and clothe
In charming playfulness, the hours of rest.

The clouds that float in fleecy sheets across
The pale blue canopy, or rest upon
The lofty mountain-side, or else condensed, 10
Roll up in massy form and feature dark—
The sun which moves in silent majesty,
And spreads its beams of light and day abroad—
The placid moon, and nightly glittering orbs,
All seem to utter tones of eloquence. 15

What is the little insect’s buzz, and what
The rustling of a straw, to the sweet notes
That flow harmonious from the harpsichord?
And what is silent nature’s eloquence,
To the imperial eloquence of words 20
Whose pathos is intelligence? Flowing
From lips by wisdom’s touch inspired, it charms—
It captivates the soul; it wields a power
Above the harmony of David’s harp,
Which charmed to peace the evil-haunted Saul. 25

Brown melancholy, sober pensiveness,
And all such moody spirits lose their grasp,
And fly like mists before the rising sun,
When language, with instruction richly fraught,
Or with amusement’s mingled colors tinged, 30
Moving in earnest strains of eloquence,
Falls in rich cadence on the feeling heart.

There is a charm in music: I have felt
The magic of its wand, and felt my heart
Melt by the witching of the power of sound: 35
But ’tis the sovereign power of speech that breaks
Inertia’s pond’rous chain, and gives us all
Creation’s wide extent to range. What else
Will lift the sluggish spirit from the throne
Of idol-self, to magnanimity? 40

Far back in olden times, when Moses led
From Egypt’s land the captive chosen tribes,
The power of eloquence high honors gained.
Moses was “slow of speech,” but Aaron plied
This potent modeler of the human mind. 45

But what can paint the beauties, or can tell
The force of eloquence, but eloquence?
And what’s all other eloquence, compared
With the bold eloquence of Truth, when couch’d
In plainness, flowing from the lips of men 50
Of God, clothed with the Holy Priesthood, and
Inspired by the Eternal’s spirit? Truth
That in one grasp, the future, present, past,
Time and eternity, and life and death,
Mortality and immortality, and the 55
Whole destiny of man and earth, combines.
This, this I call undying eloquence,
With rights and powers to probe corruption’s depths—
Expose iniquity, and point the shaft
Of death at Error. 60

This is Eloquence
That breathes forth living fire, and animates
The soul of thought, and lifts it upward to
The courts of endless day, to bask itself
In the pavilion of Omnipotence.

published in Poems 2, 1877

429 A Tribute
to Mrs. Elizabeth Goddard on the Anniversary of Her Birthday


I fain would express
A wish for your welfare—a wish that will bless.
’Twere not well if your life were a pathway of ease,
In which all that transpires is conspiring to please;—
A life where no clouds and no shadows shall come, 5
Where all is bright sunshine, sweet fragrance and bloom;—
A life without object, care, use or design;—
A life with no furnace, the gold to refine.

Be assured, my dear lady, far better your life
Be with sorrow and trying perplexities rife; 10
That the gifts you’re endow’d with thro’ experience grow,
And your power of endurance by tests you may show.
It is needful to taste of the good and the ill,
To prepare high positions with honor to fill.
In proportion to labors, rewards will be given. 15
May you earn in earth’s workshop a fulness in heaven.

May you don all the armor the Gospel requires,
And invest all the energies wisdom inspires.
In the course you’re pursuing, be certain you’re right,
Then whate’er may oppose, neither shun nor invite. 20
Unstinted by sloth and unclogg’d by abuse,
May your faculties strengthen by practical use.
May your usefulness grow, and your labors, tho’ great,
Increase year by year in responsible weight.
To humanity’s interests ever awake, 25
Be firm in truth’s conflict for righteousness’ sake.

There is much to replenish, and much to subdue,
Which requires deep reflection and vigilance, too.
The relief of the poor claims the heart and the hand;
While retrenchment reforms, great exertions demand. 30

Arouse every effort those ills to remove,
Which sap the foundation of union and love;
Which thro’ worldly ambition and selfishness grow,
And pander to vain ostentation and show.
Set your face as a flint, else ambition and pride 35
Will your precept and practice ignobly divide.

May the rich consolations the gospel bestows,
Under every bereavement, your sorrows compose.
May your name in all future, in honor be known
For your noble example—for the good you have done, 40
That your peace, as a river, may constantly flow,
Is the wish of your sister and friend,

composed 17 March 1871
published in Deseret News, 24 March 1871

430 We Are, We Were and Are to Be

Momentous thoughts! Thoughts full of interest
To each reflecting mind.
The knowledge of
Our pre-existent state is deeply veiled
In the impenetrable cloister of
Forgetfulness, until the spirit of 5
The living God, which breathed in Daniel’s mind
The dream forgotten by the haughty king
Of Babylon, reveals to us the mystery.
God is our Father, and we dwelt with Him
Ere Earth was temporally organized. 10

To carry out our Father’s great designs,
Involving our eternal destiny
And our relationship to Him and Earth,
We gave our free and uncoerced consent
To risk the consequences and abide 15
Whatever the result, and take our chance
In this probation, this our second state.
But mark the danger which we bravely dared!
By yielding all the wealth of memory—
All recollection of primeval life, 20
Of our exalted, royal origin,
With all th’ experience and the gathered stores
Of rich intelligence and wisdom drawn
From flowing streams of sources infinite,
With all of knowledge we had treasured when 25
Associated with the highest class
Of pure intelligences—all is laid
Aside, and we come forth upon the earth
In total ignorance, and at our birth
Commence a life as though we ne’er had been: 30
With all to learn, from helpless babyhood
To highest manhood’s fullest, broadest sphere.

We’re here to fill a noble destiny.
This present life is but a middle state,
A short connecting link between the two 35
Eternities, the past and future of
Our own identical existences.
The future we are hastening to—the past,
Though all forgotten, we, by honoring
Our mortal being, may anticipate, 40
In the high-aiming, heav’n-directing path.
Of man’s progression, an attainable
Attractive point, to which the present, past
And future all converge—where mem’ry, long
Dethroned, resuscitated with full pow’rs, 45
Resumes its sway, and the dark curtain of
Forgetfulness is rent asunder, and,
As if with ken of Deity, we’ll gaze
On all the scenes and all the sceneries
Connected with our former being, and 50
Our first high parentage in spirit birth,
Including knowledge of those kindred ties,
And all the dear associations formed
By friendship and by fond reciprocal
Affection. O how interesting is 55
The thought! I oft desire, yet almost fear
To know the sequel of the hidden past
Of my great life experience—life before
“The morning stars” their lofty paeans sung,
“And all the sons of God shouted for joy.” 60

How well for those who kept “their first estate”
In that most terrible of all revolts,
The bold rebellion in the courts above,
When Lucifer the heirship sought to wrest
From its legitimacy, and apply 65
Its functions to unholy purposes!

’Tis no vain thought—no phantom of the brain,
T’ anticipate the time when the long spell
Of strange forgetfulness, oblivion wraps
Around the sleeping mem’ries of the past 70
Shall be dissolved.—The “gates ajar,” at once
The panoramic vista moves along,
With recollection’s mirror unobscured,
And the great volume of primeval life
Unsealed will be unfolded leaf by leaf, 75
And every secret of development
Anterior to our nether birth disclosed,
With every phase of being—every shade
Of light and dark, or good or ill, or mix’d
In each self-woven web of character. 80
’Tis true as strange and strange as true that this
Event secure in our great future lies.

Ere man had fallen from the high altitude
Of his primeval standing on the earth,
And from the presence of the Deity, 85
By wisdom infinite a righteous plan
Had been devised by which, thro’ faith in the
Atoning blood of Jesus Christ, our own,
Our elder brother in the spirit world—
God’s only Son begotten in the flesh; 90
And thro’ obed’ence to His Gospel, which
Was preached to Adam, Seth—to Enoch and
To Noah, Moses and to Abraham,
The glorious Everlasting Gospel, which,
With all its gifts and blessings, Priesthood, powers— 95
Its ordinances and authority,
Has been restored to earth thro’ Joseph Smith,
He may regain the holy presence of
The Great Eternal, and may e’en transcend
The rank he held in Eden ere the Fall. 100

Throughout the whole vast Universe of worlds,
Each kingdom has its Order and its laws,
And each its corresponding glory too.
There is one glory of the sun—one of
The moon, another of the stars; and as 105
The stars in glory differ each from each,
So is the resurrection of the dead.
Who honors the celestial law is sure
Celestial glory thro’ that law to gain.
So with terrestrial and the multitude 110
Of the telestial glories and their laws.

Man, as free moral agent, has the right
And power to choose his future destiny
Thro’ his adherence to whichever law
Or code he shapes his life. The fullness of 115
The Everlasting Gospel of the Son
Of God contains the perfect law by which
Perfection’s full proportions are attained,
With Immortality and Endless Lives.

composed May 1871
published in Deseret News, 24 May 1871

431 Sacramental Hymn
[“Again we meet around the board”]

Again we meet around the board
Of Jesus our redeeming Lord:
With faith in His atoning blood,
Our only access unto God.

He left His Father’s courts on high, 5
With man to live—for man to die—
A world to purchase and to save,
And seal a triumph o’er the grave.

Help us, O God, to realize
The great atoning sacrifice, 10
The gift of thy beloved Son,
The Prince of Life, the Holy One.

We’re His, who has the purchase made;
His life—His blood the price He paid;
We’re His, to do His sacred will, 15
And His requirements all fulfill.

Jesus, the great fac-simile
Of God th’ Eternal Deity,
Has stoop’d to conquer—died to save
From sin and sorrow and the grave. 20

Bless us, O Lord for Jesus’ sake;
O may we worthily partake
These emblems of the flesh and blood
Of our Redeemer, Savior, God.

published in Millennial Star, 13 June 1871

432 Hymn of Praise
[“Great Source of Good—our Father God”]

Great Source of Good—our Father God—
God of Eternity,
Who spread creation’s form abroad—
All praise is due to Thee.

This day in vast assembly met, 5
All hearts, as one, should raise
In grateful strains, to celebrate
Thy love, and sing Thy praise.

We know Thy voice—we own Thy hand,
We recognize Thy power: 10
Thy finger pointed to this land,
In persecution’s hour.

Thy wisdom, man’s unerring guide,
His bark of life to steer—
Thy people’s trust, whate’er betide— 15
Thy wisdom led us here.

Thy blessing crown’d our earnest toil,
And made the desert bloom;
And drew the products from the soil,
In this, our mountain home. 20

To Thee, the highest notes we’ll raise—
The noblest tribute pay—
To Thee devote the sweetest lays,
On this illustr’ous day.

composed ca. 24 July 1871
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 August 1881

433 Sacramental Hymn
[“How great the wisdom and the love”]

How great the wisdom and the love,
That fill’d the courts on high,
And sent the Savior from above
To suffer, bleed and die!

His precious blood He freely spilt— 5
His life He freely gave:
A sinless sacrifice for guilt,
A dying world to save.

Thro’ strict obed’ence Jesus won
The prize with glory rife: 10
“Thy will O God, not mine, be done,”
Adorn’d his mortal life.

He mark’d the path and led the way,
And every point defines,
To light and life and endless day, 15
Where God’s full presence shines.

How great, how glorious and complete,
Redemption’s grand design;
Where justice, love and mercy meet
In harmony divine! 20

In mem’ry of the broken flesh
We eat the broken bread;
And witness with the cup, afresh,
Our faith in Christ, our head.

published in Sacred Hymns and Spiritual Songs, 1871

434 Hymn
[“Behold the great Redeemer die”]

Behold the great Redeemer die,
A broken law to satisfy;
He dies a sacrifice for sin
That man may live and glory win.

While guilty men His pains deride, 5
They pierce His hands and feet and side;
And with insulting scoffs and scorns,
They crown His head with platted thorns.

Although in agony He hung,
No murm’ring word escaped His tongue: 10
His high commission to fulfill,
He magnified His Father’s will.

“Father, from me remove this cup,
Yet if Thou wilt, I’ll drink it up,
I’ve done the work Thou gavest me— 15
Receive my spirit unto Thee.”

He died, and at the awful sight
The sun in shame withdrew its light!
Earth trembled and all nature sighed
In dread response, “a God has died!” 20

He lives—He lives: we humbly now
Around these sacred symbols bow,
And seek, as Saints of latter-days,
To do His will and live His praise.

published in Sacred Hymns and Spiritual Songs, 1871

435 A Voice from Utah

Think you our nation is improving? Hush!
Or stern realities will make you blush.

Look here in Utah where the President,
A juggling class of ermin’d tools, has sent:
To serve the people’s interest? No such thing! 5
They came to serve themselves, a paltry “ring”—
To stir up strife—those sacred rights to sever
Which our great Constitution grants us ever.
They came for pelf—to feed their hungry purses
With the hard earnings nature’s hand disburses 10
To honest industry and ardent toil;
They came with greedy hands to take a spoil;
They came fair virtue’s bulwark to destroy,
And desolate the homes where peace and joy
And holy confidence had long abided, 15
And sacred loyalty in truth confided:
They came—their actions show for what they came,
And to the nation they’re a burning shame,
Unless the nation widely has withdrawn
From the grand pedestal it stood upon. 20

Where is the truthful dignity, O where!
That legal functionaries used to wear?
Where is the moral rectitude that guided
Judicial acts, when honest men presided?

All facts are stubborn, unrelenting things, 25
And facts will speak in spite of serfs or kings
And Time’s impartial verdict will report
All facts verbatim, in th’ Imperial Court.

Why, in the name of good old common sense,
Should jurisprudence don a base pretense? 30
Has Grant no better stuff at his command—
No higher priced material on hand?
Has Government no better class to give,
And force the Territory to receive?
If so, our nation’s value is expended 35
And her career of glory nearly ended.

Mark well, when statesmen circumvent the claims
Of equal rights, to serve perfidious aims:
Corrupt Executives precede a fall—
They write the “Mene Tekel” on the wall. 40

When public offices are bought and sold—
When jurors’ verdicts are the price of gold—
When men devoid of moral rectitude,
Shall be intrusted with the people’s good—
When right of conscience stands in jeopardy, 45
“Death’s in the pot,” and breakers on the lee.

Let her proud flag float half-mast from its spires,
When Freedom’s altars dim their glowing fires.

composed October 1871
published in Deseret News, 18 October 1871

436 A Tribute of Love and Respect
to Our Much Beloved Sister Brown for the
Occasion of the Celebration of Her Birthday

Blessings on thee faithful sister,
With the good thou’rt numbered now,
With the holy thou’lt be numbered;
Di’mond wreaths will deck thy brow.

Zion’s faithful daughters bless thee 5
Zion’s mothers love thee well;
Of thy works of love and mercy,
Many grateful hearts will tell.

Though unseen by mortal vision,
Though untold by mortal tongue; 10
All thy works have been recorded,
And thy praises shall be sung.

Now go on thy way rejoicing,
In the useful path you’ve trod
You have known—you’ll know hereafter 15
God will be the widow’s God.

He will sanctify your trials
For your great eternal good.
All will bring you future gladness—
All will yet be understood. 20

Blessings on thee noble sister,
With the good thou’rt numbered now,
With the holy thou’lt be numbered;
Di’mond wreaths will deck thy brow.

composed 4 January 1872

437 Sacred to the Memory
of Our Beloved Sister, Mrs. Matilda Casper

She has paid the last debt due to nature;
She to earth has the casket resigned,
That the morn of the first resurrection
May restore it from dross all refined.

She had formed for her mem’ry, a garland 5
Unmingled with earthly alloy;
It was wrought of integrity’s jewels,
Which Time’s current can never destroy.

To the truth she was firm and unswerving;
Its labors to her were delight; 10
She was true, as a wife and a mother—
As a friend, her example is bright.

Now, she’s free from all earthly encumbrance;
With the “church of the First-born” above
With pure rapture her spirit commingles, 15
In bright mansions of truth, peace and love.

She has gone from a world of affliction
No more to feel sorrow and pain;
We say peace, sacred peace, to her ashes;
And ere long we shall meet her again.

published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 June 1872

438 A Friend in Heaven

When darkness veils the azure sky
And all beneath, in silence lie;
’Tis sweet t’ enjoy the favor giv’n,
To contemplate a friend in heav’n.

When earth’s vain promise quits its hold— 5
When fortune frowns or friends grow cold
Then, then a surer trust is giv’n—
A friend, a Savior dwells in heav’n.

And when we feel life’s breath retreat
And fainting pulses fainter beat; 10
Then, then we prize the promise giv’n
To meet a faithful Friend in heav’n.


439 My Sister, Leonora A. Morley
Dedicated to Her Friends in Brigham City,
Where She Departed This Life, February 11, 1872

’Tis hard to part with those we dearly love,
But parting comes to all.

No purer tie—
No holier sympathy warms human breast
Than that of loving sisterhood, where heart
To heart is joined and interwoven with 5
A long, well tested and unbroken chain
Of mutual confidence—a confidence
Unstirred by envy, jealousy, or breach
Of sacred trust: Where the broad stream of thought
Flows unabridg’d: where each can think aloud. 10
Such was the love inspiring confidence,
Strengthened as years accumulated with
My sister and myself. Ours was the sweet
Reciprocation where each sentiment
Found safe repository—safe as heaven’s 15
Eternal archives.

But my sister’s gone!
I feared—I felt—I knew she soon would go;
But when beside her bed I watch’d, and saw
The last faint breath which fed the spring of life
Exhaled, it seemed frail nature’s tend’rest cord 20
Was rent asunder, and a crushing sense
Of loneliness, like solitude’s deep shade,
In that unguarded moment made me feel
As though the lights of earth had all gone out,
And left me desolate.

I knew ’twas false— 25
I knew that many noble, loving ones,
And true, remained; but none can fill
The vacant place—it is impossible;
Th’ endearing ties we hold as saints of God,
The ties of consanguinity, secured 30
By sacred cov’nants which the Priesthood binds
On earth, and ’tis recorded in the heavens,
We shall perpetuate beyond the grave;
Eternal union with the cherished ones
Will crown the glory of immortal lives. 35

True love may multiply its object most
Extensively without diminishing
Its strength, but love accepts no substitute.

When the fond mother lays her darling down
In death’s cold, silent sleep, though others may 40
Be added to her arms, the vacancy
Remains until the resurrection shall
Give back her child.

My sister faithfully
Life’s changeful battle waged—her life was full
Of years—her years were fill’d with usefulness: 45
Her trust was in the living God, who hears
And speaks as He was wont to hear and speak.
She loved the Gospel and exemplified
It in her life. Her heart knew no deceit,
Her lips ne’er moved with fulsome flattery, 50
Her tongue with guile. Other positions of
Responsibility, as well as those
Of wife and mother she has nobly filled.
Her sun went down in peace. For her death had
No sting—the grave will have no victory— 55
Her noble spirit lives and dwells above.

The casket rests—The pure component part,
Th’ eternal portion of the human form,
In life combined with the gross element,
Sleeps in the bosom of our mother Earth, 60
Secure from nature’s changing processes—
Despite decomposition’s complex skill.

But the gross, earthly substance, that which is
Both tangible to mortal sight and touch—
Formed with affinities that downward tend 65
Strength’ning our hold on this our lower life,
Clinging to earth as like adheres to like
This, soon as life becomes extinct, by dint
Of one of nature’s fundamental laws,
The law of restitution, has commenced, 70
And separates till all is disengaged—
Till every particle shall be restored
Back to its native element, to be
Transformed in infinite varieties
To new creations and in other forms— 75
Through every grade of life and being here,
From earth and herbage up to brute and man—
From land to land—from clime to clime transferred;
Leaving the pure unchanging element
(When all that is corruptible has been 80
Dissolved and passed away) to rest—to sleep
Until the glorious resurrection morn
And then come forth in triumph from the tomb
And clothe the spirit with immortal bloom.

Adieu my sister, we shall meet again, 85
And live on earth when Jesus Christ shall reign.

published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 August 1872

440 To Mrs. M. T. Smoot

Should words of praise to volumes swell
And wreaths, her name, enclose,
They will not speak her worth so well
As her Life-Record shows.


441 “Dearest Mother
may your birthday”

Dearest Mother, may your birthday
Many, many times return—
Sacred blessings crown your pathway
While your lamp of life shall burn.


442 Responsive
to My Magnanimous Friends

Impress’d with kindness which exhales
Beneficence unsought;
I fain would speak, but language fails
To grasp the swelling thought.

E’en gratitude, deep cherish’d word, 5
Unable to express
The feelings in my bosom stirr’d,
Dissolves in thankfulness.

I go with humble, grateful heart
For every kindness shown: 10
May Heav’n its richer gifts impart
To each and every one.

I go depending on the care
Of God, our Father God;
For which, I ask your faith and prayers, 15
While I remain abroad.

The warm emotions of the heart
Too full for utterance,
Must bask in silence—must resort
T’ unspoken eloquence.

composed 26 October 1872
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 November 1872

443 Crossing the Atlantic
Written at Sea by Miss Eliza R. Snow,
Dedicated to the Ladies of Utah

We’re on the “Minnesota,”
A ship of “Guion Line,”
Which boasts her Captain Morgan,
The gen’rous staunch and kind.

Amid the heaving waters 5
That form the liquid plain;
With four and twenty draft feet
The steamer ploughs the main.

I’m gazing on the ocean,
As on the deck I stand, 10
And feel the cooling breezes,
With which the sails are fanned.

By sunlight, star and moonlight,
And tranquil evening shade,
The ever varying features 15
Of ocean I’ve surveyed.

At times with restless motion,
As if her spirit grieves—
As tho’ her breast were paining,
Her mighty bosom heaves. 20

And then vast undulations,
Like rolling prairies spread;
With wave on wave dissolving,
With tumbling, dashing tread.

Upon the deep, dark billows, 25
Broad, foaming white caps rise;
And sprays in dazzling beauty,
Shoot upward to the skies.

’Tis now a plain, smooth surface,
As tho’ in cozy sleep, 30
Were wrapped each wave and billow
Upon the briny deep.

But hark! The Captain orders
The furling every sail;
Storm-clouds and headwinds rising 35
Portend a coming gale.

Anon all Neptune’s furies
Are on the steamer’s path;
We mount the deck to witness
The ocean in its wrath. 40

The scene! What pen can write it?
What pencil’s art could show
The wild, terrific grandeur
Which reigns around us now?

The waving, surging waters, 45
Like battle armor clash;
Tumultuous waves upheaving
With foaming fury dash.

The steamer mounts the billows,
Then dips the space below; 50
And bravely presses onward
Tho’ reeling to and fro.

We’re sailing on the ocean
With wind and sail and steam;
Where views of “terra firma” 55
Are like the poet’s dream.

The God who made the waters—
Who made the solid lands,
Is ours—our Great Protector;
Our life is in His hands. 60

Subservient to His counsel—
Confiding in His care—
Directed by His wisdom,
There’s safety everywhere.

composed before 16 November 1872
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 January 1873

444 London
Written while President G. A. Smith and Party, Consisting of L. Snow, His Sister E. R. Snow, F. Little, His Daughter Clara, P. A. Schettler, G. Dunford and T. Jennings Were in London “En Route” for Palestine

Far, far away from our dear native land,
In England’s great Metropolis we stand;
Where art and skill—labor and wealth combine
With time’s co-operation in design
Of superstructure’s bold and beauteous form, 5
With all varieties of strength and charm.

Here massive columns—stately towers, arise.
And lift their spires in greetings to the skies;
Fine parks and gardens, palaces and halls,
With sculptured niches,—frescoe-painted walls; 10
Where no expense is spared to beautify,
Nor time, nor toil, to captivate the eye,
We saw, and viewing, continuously admired
The master strokes by Genius’ hand inspired.

To “New Westminster Palace” we resort, 15
Where the Chief Justice holds his august court;
’Twas then in session, and the Exchequer too—
In wig and gown—a grand, imposing view!
The House of Lords and Commons, too we saw,
But not those grave expounders of the law. 20

With deferential thought we fixed our gaze,
There, in “The Prince’s Hall,” where face to face,
On either side, on carved projections stood,
With features varied as in life’s warm blood,
White marble statues, from the sculptor’s hand, 25
Of British Statesmen, men who could command
The power of eloquence—the force of mind,
A mighty nation’s destinies to bind—
Chatham, Pitt, Granville, Walpole, Fox, beside
Others who’re justly England’s boast and pride. 30

We visited the “Abbey” where repose in state,
The effigies of many good and great,
With some whose deeds are well deserving hate.
Group’d in “The Poet’s Corner,” here, we found,
With rich, artistic sculpture trophies crown’d, 35
The mem’ries of the muse’s world renown’d.

In some compartments where old, massive stones
Comprize the flooring, lie their mouldering bones,
And we with reverential footsteps tread
Above the ashes of the illustrious dead. 40

Great London City, mart of wealth and power,
Home for the wealthy—charnel for the poor!
And here amid its boasted pomp and pride,
Some faithful Soldiers of the Cross reside—
A few choice spirits whom the watchman’s care, 45
By humble search, found scatter’d here and there,
“Like angels’ visits, few and far between,”
As patient gardeners sep’rate clusters glean,
They barter earth’s allurements and device
To gain the “Pearl” of great and matchless price, 50
And what to them the honors, pride and show
That perish with their using, here below?
Their hopes are high—their noble aims extend
Where life and peace and progress never end;
Where God’s own Kingdom, Time’s last knell survives, 55
Crowned with the gifts and powers of endless lives.

composed 24 November 1872
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 February 1873

445 Farewell to Paris

Farewell great Paris, soon I go
Upon the morning train;
I go where softer breezes blow
On land and wat’ry main.
I’m going now, and as I leave, 5

I take a parting view,
And see the web of distance weave,
That separates from you.
Your spires that glitter in the sun
Above “The Arch of Time,” 10

Are disappearing one by one:
I hear no church bell chime.
Gay Paris, beautiful e’en now
Bereft of much you boast;
Tho’ Prussia aim’d your pride to bow 15

’Twas Paris hurt you most.
War demons ’roused in foreign lands
Can never wield the power
As when, by suicidal hands,
Commissioned to devour— 20

Of all the ills of human life
That mighty nations cursed;
The warfare of internal strife
And carnage is the worst.

Your ruined Palaces and Halls, 25
Scathed by fraternal hate,
Are sad mementos—each recalls
Your folly and your fate.

M. Thiers, with wise sagacity,
The dire result foresaw 30
If France, with blind temerity,
The battle-ax should draw.

He with the French Assembly plead,
And with Napoleon,
To change their purpos’d aim to tread 35
The pride of Prussia down.

He now presides. Will France sustain
His policy of peace,
Or in a vortex plunge again
Where waste and crime increase? 40

Fair, lovely Paris! What shall be
Your future, who can tell?
Your lofty spires, no more I see—
Again I say, Farewell!

composed between 11 and 19 December 1872
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 February 1873

446 The Year 1872

The Year is stepping out regardless of
My long, long distance from my Mountain Home.
It leaves me in Italia’s “sunny clime,”
Where verdant foliage, gentle breezes kiss,
And balmy zephyrs fan the evening tide. 5

The year now passing out, has, in its course
In lib’ral portions, meted out to me
The wide extremes of deep bereavement, and
Munificence in richly flowing streams,
Which I acknowledge freely ere we part. 10

All grateful reminiscences, the old,
Expiring Year inscribes indelibly
On mem’ry’s sacred tablet, richly wreath’d
With choice mementos of the good produced—
Of vict’ries truth and justice have achieved— 15
Improvement’s progress in the march of mind,
And every aid to poor humanity;
While its successor treads upon its heels.

Good bye old Year. We both are moving on:
You, to the cloister of the mighty past, 20
To join it to the future yet unborn,
I, to the farfamed land of Palestine,
Which has a hist’ry of the past, that bears
With a momentous and eternal weight,
Of destiny to all of human kind, 25
Upon the future which the passing years
With hurried tread ere long will introduce
With bold, magnificent developments.

I go to place my feet upon the land
Where once, the Prince of Peace, the Son of God 30
Was born—where once He lived and walk’d and preach’d,
And prayed, admonished, taught, rebuked and blest;
And then, to answer justice’ great demand,
And seal his mission of Eternal Love,
Upon the cross poured out his precious blood— 35
Arose to life triumphant o’er the tomb;
And after being seen and heard and felt,
Ascended up to heaven; and as He went,
Those who stood looking, heard an angel say,
“Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye here 40
Gazing to heaven? The selfsame Jesus, whom
Ye see ascending, in like manner, will
Again descend.”

Each year that passes on,
Clips from the thread of time, a portion of
Its intervening length, and hurries up 45
The coming great and grand fulfilment of
That strange prediction—strange and strangely true.
That most momentous period for the great
Event, is fast approximating, and
The moving of the waters now, amidst 50
The nations of the earth, like deepest shades
Of pencil drawings, seem foreshadowing
The world’s great crisis.

Human policy
Grows tremulous; while human governments,
With tender care are fondly fostering, 55
And feeding with their life’s best nourishment,
The seeds of their own dissolution.

Is poising on a pivot. England rests
On her broad pedestal, but resting moves
With vacillating tendencies. The famed 60
Italia stands in leaning posture from
The Papal Chair to King Emmanuel;
While Russia, beckoning to Austria,
To Germany, or whosoever will;
Solicits help to lift the balance 65
Of Power, now lying just beyond her reach.

The wires of destiny are working on,
To consummate eternal purposes,
And bring results of change, that must precede
“The Second coming of the Son of Man;” 70
When, unto Him, “whose right it is to reign,”
All human pow’rs and governments will bow.

composed on 31 December 1872
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 March 1873

447 Florence

Beneath high, villa-dotted hills
That in succession rise
Like rich gemm’d parapets around;
The lovely Florence lies.

The Arno, broad and gentle stream, 5
That flows meand’ring through,
Divides, but in unequal parts,
The city plat in two.

I’ve seen its princely palaces
Where wealth and ease reside— 10
Where independence fills her sails
With luxury and pride.

I see you, Florence, all the while,
So beautiful and gay;
I ask, Is this your common dress, 15
Or, this your holiday?

Be wise; and while their golden show’rs,
The bounteous heav’ns distil;
Avoid debasing luxury,
Prolific source of ill. 20

The crown of Peace is on your head—
Its wreath around your brow;
The royal carpet, newly spread,
Adorns your threshold now.

composed 10 January 1873
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 March 1873

448 Sunrise on the Mediterranean

We mounted “Saturno’s” deck to see
A grand, magnificent scene,
The rising sun in its majesty,
Diffusing its golden sheen.

A charming precursor first appear’d 5
In volumes of golden rays,
Increasing their splendor till all around
The horizon seemed to blaze.

Anon, the disk of the “king of day,”
O’er the wat’ry main arose; 10
Now upward and onward he makes his way,
Till the canopy gaily glows.

The morning is fine the air serene,
And the sky above is clear,
Except where a tiny cloud 15
Like a floating nymph appears.

The sparkling waves of the sea below,
The blazonry over head,
The horizon wrap’d in a burning glow,
A thrilling enchantment spread.

composed 9 February 1873
published in Woman’s Exponent, 13 April 1873

449 The Dead Sea—a Monument

Though “dead,” it is a living monument.
’Tis peerless, archless, towerless, and, though
Devoid of every architectural
Embellishment, it justly claims to be
The prince of monuments in Palestine. 5

It is a monument of justice, and
Of righteous doom, of crime and wickedness,
A speechless, speaking monument of wrath
Divine, poured out on guiltiness
Of dark abominations—monitor 10
Of warning to the generations past,
The present, and to all that are to come.
It stands where stood the “Cities of the Plain”—
Where Sodom and Gomorrah, steeped in sin,
Were first devoured by fire, then swallowed up! 15

Its dense, saline, preserving properties
Are morally significant of the
Great purposes of God concerning sin—
Whene’er iniquity attains its full,
To sweep it with destruction’s besom, and 20
To ultimately purify the earth.

O’er cliffs precipitous—thro’ winding trails—
Rocky acclivities and frightful steeps—
At times, in zig-zag course, to cut the heights
That otherwise were inaccessible, 25
O’erlooking dark abysses, gaping chasms,
And, sometimes, beautiful sequester’d dells,
Where Nature, most successfully, has made
Attempts at wildly grand sublimity.
We went in search of this strange monument, 30
And found it nestled quietly beneath
Judea’s mountains—on a sterile plain,
Where solitude in death-like stillness reigns.

This Sea, when seen as we beheld it—’neath
The cloudless noon-day sun, is beautiful. 35
The lucid rays appeared on crystalline
To fall, creating myriads of gems,
Which sparkling, glowed with dazzling brilliancy,
As if the Sea’s smooth crest were overspread
With little, shining pearls most bounteously 40
To crown with gaiety the briny deep.

We gazed upon the Sea: ’Twas motionless,
As if in reverence for the Almighty power
Of Deity, whose awful mandate called
It into being.

In deep silence wrapped— 45
Without a sound of moving waters, or
The gentle murmur of a stirring wave,
All, all is silence, and this silence speaks
Far more impressively than uttered tones.
’Tis God’s own monument, and proof against 50
The wreck of ages and the waste of time.

composed 1873
published in Contributor, October 1879

450 On the Mount of Olives

It was a lovely Sabbath day:
The sun no brighter shone
On Judah’s land when Judah’s power
Was far and widely known.

The scenery calm—no breezes stirr’d 5
Beneath a cloudless sky:
To overcharge my swelling heart,
All nature seemed to vie.

I reach’d the summit of the Mount,
And men of God were there; 10
And there we worship’d—there we bowed
In humble, fervent prayer.

The place was hallow’d by the thought
With living int’rest rife,
That there the great Redeemer taught 15
The words of Endless Life.

And there we bowed where He had bowed—
We stood where he had stood—
Where He, while His disciples view’d,
Ascended up to God. 20

There, in a tent, where sacred rites
Were shielded from display;
A Dedication service crown’d
That memorable day.

The Dedication: “Judah’s land 25
Shall hence, redeem’d become;
For Judah’s gath’ring, and to build
Again, Jerusalem.”

composed 3 March 1873
published in Correspondence of Palestine Tourists, 1875


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