Poems 476–507

 

476 Tribute to the Birthday
of the Prophet Joseph

In genial fellowship we hail this day,
And our commemorative service pay—
Entwine fresh garlands for th’ auspicious morn
Of that blest day when Joseph Smith was born.

Long centuries of time had come and gone, 5
With prophets of the living God unknown;
From heav’n’s high court no voice nor sound was heard—
From realms of light no angel form appear’d:
The “people heap’d up teachers” false and vain
“With itching ears,” and thirst for worldly gain: 10
And Christendom, with all its boasted lore
And “hireling priests” ignored the gifts and power
Of Christ’s pure gospel, which salvation brought
When in its fullness, his apostles taught.

To check the swelling tide of wickedness— 15
The noble and the pure in heart to bless,
And God’s eternal purpose to fulfill,
Required a prophet, to reveal His will.
The prophet came, and early in his youth,
Received the mighty keys of light and truth— 20
Of wisdom, knowledge and to usher in
A Dispensation, and its work begin.

Harmoniously in him, at once combined
Goodness of heart and strength of mastermind,
Embodying childlike, sweet simplicity 25
With superhuman, Godlike majesty,
He, with the keys of old, Elijah held,
Thick clouds of darkness from the grave dispelled—
Unlocked the prison doors, as Jesus did,
Which long had bound the spirits of the dead. 30

Thro’ him the priesthood of the living God
Has been restored to earth—“the iron rod”
Which o’er all nations shall extend its sway
In righteousness, to crown the latter-day.

Bold as a lion, none but God he feared, 35
And yet as humble as a child, appear’d
When he approached his Maker to implore
Strength to endure the weight of wrongs he bore;
And when he intercession made with God
For aid to spread the gospel light abroad, 40
To bless and save mankind from guilty strife
Though men, in blindness, sought his precious life.

We celebrate our glorious era’s morn,
The day the Prophet Joseph Smith was born
A mighty destiny hangs on that birth, 45
That yet will revolutionize the earth—
Not only earth—the worlds beneath ’twill move:
It has already stirr’d the worlds above:
The heavens were opened, and at once came down
The Father God and his Beloved Son 50
To our great prophet, then a humble youth,
And lighted here the glorious lamp of Truth.
“The gates ajar”—now angels come and go
From heaven to earth, and spirits from below.

Where’er the gospel Jesus taught, has spread, 55
The nations tremble with foreboding dread—
All Christendom is filled with rage and fear
While “broken reed” to “broken reed” draws near.
To war with God, the wicked now combine,
And hostile sects in mutual efforts join. 60

Here in St. George, Jehovah’s Temple stands—
A monument of faith in God’s commands—
Emblem of purity and holiness,
The worthy living and the dead, to bless.
It speaks in tones of more than mortal speech, 65
And more than human thought has power to reach,
That God is with us. And it testifies
That Joseph Smith, the great, and good, and wise,
Is God’s true prophet, and his memory dear
The hosts above, and saints on earth revere. 70

He changed the current of its ebbing tide
And forced the ship of life to upward ride—
In plainness marked the “narrow way” to God,
And sealed his testimony with his blood.

composed ca. 23 December 1880
published in Deseret News, 2 February 1881

 

477 Our Little George

George has been our darling baby,
Then he grew our darling boy;
He was lovely, loved and loving,
Mother’s pride and father’s joy.

O how short his earthly mission! 5
To the courts of endless day,
From a world of sin and sorrow,
Little George is called away.

He has gone where love and beauty
Blend with music’s richest swells; 10
George is now her loving brother,
Where his sister Georgie dwells.

published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 January 1881

 

478 To Mrs. Jane B. Johnson

Blessed art thou, precious Sister—
Blessed you shall ever be—
Holding on the “rod of iron,”
You shall live eternally.
In the high and holy mansions— 5
When your earthly work is done,
You shall wear a crown of glory,
Brighter than the noonday sun.

composed 23 February 1881

 

479 To the Presiding Bishop

Edward Hunter on the Eighty-eighth Anniversary 
of His Birthday

Hail, our worthy, aged Bishop,
On your Anniversary!
You have won unfading laurels
Thro’ your staunch integrity.
Rich in gifts of grace and wisdom— 5
With celestial light imbued,
By supernal beams of knowledge,
From the Eternal Source of Good.

Our first Prophet loved you dearly—
Well your sterling worth he knew; 10
He, in holy bonds of friendship,
Still retains his love for you.
Your large heart, with gen’rous impulse,
Unrestrained by selfish greed,
From your ample store, imparted 15
Freely to the Prophet’s need.

When unhallowed persecution,
Waged against the Saints of God;
You, unflinching and undaunted,
Firmly as a bulwark stood. 20
Men of trust—of faith and courage,
When the sky was dark and drear,
Were esteemed most choice and precious,
By our noble, martyr’d Seer.

You have blessed the lonely widow— 25
Soothed and cheered the orphan’s heart;
You, with kindness, faith and patience,
Have performed a brother’s part.
As a fond and loving father,
You alleviate distress— 30
When officially presiding,
You decide in righteousness.

You have made a noble record,
Filled with useful service here,
Where the name of Edward Hunter, 35
Many “hearts and homes” hold dear.
You have reached a mark of honor,
Far above all earthly fame—
You require no sculptured marble,
To immortalize your name.

composed ca. 22 June 1881
published as a broadsheet, 22 June 1881

 

480 All Hail to the Day

Song for the Celebration of the Fourth of July, 1881, 
in Salt Lake Co. Which on Account of the 
Assassination of Prest. Garfield Did Not Take Place

All hail to the day when the Standard of Freedom,
Bright Phœnix arose o’er proud Tyranny’s grave:
Loud cheers for the vet’rans whose hearts swelled with courage
Ere th’ conquest was won by the sword of the brave.

[Chorus]

All hail to our sacred, divine Constitution— 5
That heav’n-inspired gift, stamp’d with virtue’s life‑lease;
We crown with rich gems of true, loyal devotion,
That bulwark of Justice—that trophy of Peace.
Those statesmen knew not that Jehovah was guiding
Their thoughts and their moves, in those soul‑trying hours, 10
When their names they affix’d to the bold Declaration
Of national Rights and all national Pow’rs.

Chorus.

With Washington—known as the Sire of his country—
In th’ annals of honor, their names are enroll’d:
Their mem’ries are dear to all lovers of freedom— 15
Enshrined in true hearts with the sages of old.

Chorus.

Should traitors presume, with oppression’s foul daring
From th’ dear Constitution, to sever one thread:
The vengeance of God, shorn of mercy’s forbearing,
Will follow with blight the perfidious tread. 20

Chorus.

The banner that waves o’er the mountains of Ephraim,
Endow’d with insignia our fore‑fathers won:
We’ll honor, preserve, and unsullied bequeath it,
To bless generations while time shall roll on.

All hail to our sacred, divine Constitution;
That heav’n‑inspired gift, stamped with virtue’s life‑lease:
We crown with rich gems of true loyal devotion,
That bulwark of Justice—that trophy of Peace.

composed ca. 4 July 1881
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 July 1882

 

481 Bury Me Quietly When I Die

When my spirit ascends to the world above,
To unite with the choirs in celestial love,
Let the finger of silence control the bell,
To restrain the chime of a funeral knell:
Let no mournful strain—not a sound be heard 5
By which a pulse of the heart is stirred—
No note of sorrow to prompt a sigh:
Bury me quietly when I die.

I am aiming to earn a celestial crown—
To merit a heavenly, pure renown; 10
And, whether in grave or in tomb I’m laid—
Beneath the tall oak, or the cypress shade;
Whether at home with dear friends around,
Or in distant lands, upon stranger ground—
Under wintry clouds, or a summer sky: 15
Bury me quietly when I die.

What avails the parade and the splendor here,
To a legal heir to a heavenly sphere?
To heirs of salvation what is the worth,
In their perishing state, the frail things of earth? 20
What is death to the good, but an entrance gate
That is placed on the verge of a rich estate,
Where commissioned escorts are waiting by?
Bury me quietly when I die.

On the “iron rod” I have laid my hold; 25
If I keep the faith, and like Paul of old
Shall “have fought the good fight,” and Christ the Lord
Has a crown in store with a full reward
Of the holy Priesthood in fulness rife,
With the gifts and the powers of an endless life, 30
And a glorious mansion for me on high:
Bury me quietly when I die.

When the orb of day sinks down in the west,—
When its light reclines on the evening’s crest—
When the lamp in the socket is low and dim— 35
When the cup of life is filled up to the brim—
When the golden Autumn’s brief glass has run,
And gray Winter with whit’ning tread moves on—
When the arrow of death from its bow shall fly:
Bury me quietly when I die. 40

Like a beacon that rises o’er ocean’s wave,
There’s a light—there’s a life beyond the grave;
The future is bright, and it beckons me on
Where the noble and pure and the brave have gone;
Those who battled for truth with their mind and might, 45
With their garments clean and their armor bright:
They are dwelling with God in a world on high:
Bury me quietly when I die.

composed July 1881
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 December 1881

 

482 In Memoriam

“She lived a Saint, beloved on earth
By friends and kindred dear,
Who knew her well and prized her worth—
Her memory still revere.”

published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 December 1881

 

483 The Mormon Battalion
and First Wagon Road 
over the Great American Desert

When “Mormon” trains were journeying thro’
To Winter Quarters, from Nauvoo,
Five hundred men were called to go
To settle claims with Mexico—
To fight for that same Government 5
From which, as fugitives we went.
What were their families to do—
Their children, wives, and mothers too,
When fathers, husbands, sons were gone?
Mothers drove teams, and camps moved on. 10

And on the brave Battalion went,
With Colonel Allen who was sent
As officer of Government.
The noble Colonel Allen knew
His “Mormon boys” were brave and true, 15
And he was proud of his command,
As he led forth his “Mormon Band.”
He sickened, died, and they were left
Of a loved leader, soon bereft!
And his successors proved to be 20
The embodiment of cruelty,
Lieutenant Smith the tyrant, led
The Cohort on, in Allen’s stead,
To Santa Fe, where Colonel Cooke,
The charge of the Battalion, took. 25

’Twas well the vision of the way,
Was closed before them on the day
They started out from Santa Fe.
’Tis said no infantry till then,
E’er suffered equal to those men. 30
Their beeves were famished and their store
Was nigh exhausted long before
They neared the great Pacific shore.
Teams e’en fell dead upon the road,
While soldiers helped to draw the load! 35
’Twas cruel, stern necessity
That prompted such severity;
For General Kearney in command
Of army in the western land,
Expressly ordered Colonel Cooke, 40
The man who failure could not brook,
To open up a wagon-road
Where wheels, till then, had never trod;
And Colonel Cooke was in command
Across that desert waste and sand: 45
He, with a staunch and iron will,
The general’s orders to fulfill,
Must every nerve and sinew strain
The expedition’s points to gain.
Tho’ stern, and e’en at times morose, 50
Strict sense of justice marked his course.
He, as his predecessors, knew
The “Mormon” men were firm and true.
They found road-making worse by far
Than all the horrors of the war: 55
Tried by the way—when they got thro’
They’d very little more to do:
The opposing party, panic struck,
Dare not compete with “Mormon” pluck,
And off in all directions fled— 60
No charge was fired—no blood was shed.

Our God who rules in worlds of light,
Controls by wisdom and by might.
If need, His purpose to fulfill,
He moves the nations at His will— 65
The destinies of men o’errules,
And uses whom He will as tools.
The wise can see and understand,
While fools ignore His guiding hand.

Ere the Battalion started out 70
Upon that most important route,
’Twas thus predicted by the tongue
Of the Apostle, Brigham Young,
“If to your God and country true,
You’ll have no fighting there to do.” 75

Was General Kearney satisfied?
Yes, more—for he with martial pride
Said, “O’er the Alps Napoleon went,
But these men cross’d a continent.”

And thus, with God Almighty’s aid 80
The conquest and the road were made,
By which a threatning storm was staved,
And lo! the Saints of God were saved.

published in A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion 
in the Mexican War, 1881

 

484 To Mrs. Elizabeth Cutler

Blessings on you, precious Sister,
Blessings crown the path you tread—
Love and friendship sweetly blending
Twine their garland round your head.

You are blest with worthy children 5
Those who love and honor God,—
Imitating your example
Holding fast the “iron rod.”

May the year on which we’ve entered
In its passage bring you more 10
Heavenly peace and richer comfort
Than has any year before.

May your pathway still grow brighter
In your onward, upward way
Till the “Gates ajar” shall give you 15
Entrance to Eternal Day.

Now my dear and gentle Sister,
Many, many thanks are due
For that truly, lovely “token,”—
Representative of you.

composed 21 January 1882

 

485 What Is Most Beautiful?

In Nature’s bow’rs ’tis sweet to sing
The waking loveliness of Spring,
When flow’ry nations, rising forth,
Perfume the air and deck the earth.

How charming is the morning ray 5
That ushers in the blaze of day!
How beauteous is the op’ning flower
That decorates the vernal bower.

But what is more delightful far
Than Spring and morn and flow’rets are, 10
Is youth that early seeks to God
And spreads the Gospel’s light abroad.

When youthful graces sweetly join,
And with religion’s charms combine—
With faith and hopes that upward tend, 15
How grand the aim—how great the end!

And if there’s aught beneath the sun
That angels love to look upon,
’Tis when the youthful pow’rs of mind
Are to the work of God inclined. 20

Let scorn unveil its vulgar art—
Let pale-faced envy point its dart;
My heart is fix’d, a crown to gain
Where God and Christ in glory reign.

published in Primary Speaker, 1882

 

486 Our Aims

The fleeting hours of childhood
And youth, are golden hours,
In which we lay foundations
For manhood’s noble powers.

In them we form the habits 5
Which mark our future years,
Which fill the heart with gladness,
Or wet the cheek with tears.

That we obey our parents,
And give them honor due, 10
Is God’s command, with promise
Of life and blessings too.

We’ll seek, while scenes of childhood
And youth are moving on,
To store our minds with wisdom, 15
And cherish reason’s dawn.

We’ll shun each evil practice,
And set our standard high,
And God will help us reach it,
If we are prompt to try. 20

The good, the wise and noble
We’ll strive to emulate;
And if we’re great in goodness,
We shall be truly great.

published in Primary Speaker, 1882

 

487 Answered
[To Emily Scott from E. R. Snow]

DEAR MRS. EMILY SCOTT:

That grave—where’er that grave may be,
Which forms a link ’twixt you and me,
Will burst asunder and resign
Its trust.
Whose arms will then entwine 5
The precious darling baby who
Has been, and is, so dear to you?

All things above and all below,
Are bound by law; it being so,
A law of God requires of you 10
An act performed—a work to do,
By which, for true affections aim,
You may secure a legal claim,
That you may clasp that baby dear,
And into perfect stature rear 15
Its little form, in purity,
And glorious immortality,
Stern death will sever every tie
That is not based above the sky.

Dear lady, I now testify 20
God has revealed a law whereby
The dearest of all earthly ties,
We may securely legalize;
To have—to hold—to enjoy forever,
Beyond the power of death to sever. 25

See to it lady—’tis of more
Intrinsic wealth than golden ore—
Comprising more true, real worth
Than all the precious things of earth
Which perish with their use—’tis more 30
Of value than all worldly lore.

Thanks for the kindly feelings you express:
My heart reciprocates with friendliness.
Methinks I see you sitting by that grave,
Absorbed in thought as deep as ocean’s wave. 35
While there alone enrapt’d in reverie,
How strange that you, a stranger, thought of me!
Yet, if the curtains of the past were drawn,
And we our pre-existence gazed upon,
Perhaps life’s contest fully might explain 40
We once were friends, and now are friends again.

Important movements have head quarters where
The greater gifts and privileges are.
Here are the Temples of the living God—
From here His mighty work goes forth abroad. 45
Then leave that grave: angels will guard its sleep
While you secure the right that babe to keep:
Prepare ’neath holy Temple roofs to tread,
And labor for the living, and the dead.
Changes rush on—unique events appear— 50
We may clasp hands, and bless each other here.

composed February 1883
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 March 1883

 

488 Lines
Respectfully Inscribed to Elder George Teasdale

Go, George—you know the Shepherd’s voice—
You’ve heard the Master call;
In duty’s cast, you mould your choice,
Where’er the lines may fall.

Should threatening storm clouds boldly rise 5
With aspect dark and drear,
To overspread your mission skies,
Remember, GOD IS NEAR.

Go, George—the angel of the Lord
Will open up your ways 10
Your strength, if e’er your lot is hard
Shall be as is your day.

God is your buckler and your shield;
With skill, and valiantly,
His Spirit’s two-edged sword you’ll wield 15
With crowning victory.

Go, George—but were it ours to choose,
We would not bid you go;
When Father speaks, shall we refuse?
NO—Wisdom answers NO. 20

Then go—and wisely, bravely tread
The path before you now;
You go with blessings on your head,
And laurels on your brow.

composed 28 February 1883
published in Deseret News, 21 March 1883

 

489 Affectionately to
Mrs. Marinda N. J. Hyde on the 68th Anniversary of Her Birth

MY DEAR SISTER MARINDA,
On this natal day
A small tribute of love, o’er your threshold I lay,
I now meet you in age—I have known you in youth,
Ere Cumorah unbosomed the Records of Truth.
Since then we have labored together in love, 5
Where the Spirit of God showered down from above.

Your heart all unselfish—your hand never slack,
Has been kindly extended to help those that lack;
With true greatness of soul you have sought out and blest
The sad and afflicted, and cheered the distressed, 10
Until “Mother in Israel,” the title your due,
The pure daughters of Zion accord unto you.

With me, in our friendships, you’ve ever been true,
And my heart’s full of blessings for yours and for you.
What a prize, honest friendship, a gem never sold 15
For the purchase of favor, nor the purchase of gold;
You are true to yourself—to your friends, and to God—
You’ve acknowledged His hand, and “passed under the rod.”

Be your coming years happy—your last be your best,
Then bright as a sunbeam you go to your rest, 20
And receive the reward of your labors of love,
In the midst of the just in the mansions above.
If perchance I precede you, by first passing through,
To the loved ones, I’ll bear a good record of you.

composed 28 June 1883
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 July 1883

490 Allie’s Resolve

As Allie, wrapped in thought, survey’d
Life’s scenes as time revolv’d,
And true results in balance weigh’d,
She nobly thus resolv’d:

“I’ll turn my thoughts to usefulness— 5
With skill my hands I’ll train—
I’ll treasure knowledge that will bless,
And wisdom strive to gain.

“I will not be a silly ape,
That fashion’s pow’r can charm, 10
And change into a hideous shape
My nat’ral, lovely form.

“I will not furnish ridicule—
A theme at my expense,
By pandering to folly’s tool, 15
The world’s extravagance.

“I will not condescend to be
An advertising scroll,
A walking sign of mill’nery,
A glaring sidewalk stroll. 20

“Their fulsome praise I will despise
Who flatter gaudy show—
I’ll seek to merit what the wise
Sincerely may bestow.

“I’ll mingle elegance and taste 25
With sweet simplicity,
And will not give my time to waste
On vain frivolity.

“I’ll be a woman—one of worth,
Whose setting sun shall tell 30
That Allie’s mission on the earth
Has been accomplished well.”

published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 August 1883

 

491 Birth-day Scrap
or Anniversary Tribute,
to the Honorable Charles W. Penrose

All hail the day!—the day when mortal Birth,
C. W. Penrose introduced to Earth,
Whose purpose, heart, and brain, are all combined
To aid the upward progress of mankind.
He’s one of those, emergencies require, 5
When grand events are destined to transpire.

With inspiration from the Eternal Source,
In lucid eloquence’ magnetic force,
He pleads the rights of man and woman kind
With judgment, reason, fact, and truth combined. 10
In the illustrious work of God and men
He plies the strong twin-agents, speech and pen.

Our friend and brother, may your useful life
Be full of years—your years, with blessings rife,
Long may you live the sword of Truth to wield; 15
Till Peace is crowned on Zion’s battle field—
Live till the pure in heart are unoppressed—
Yes, live to share the Saints’ triumphant rest,
Long after Edmunds, Cullom,—all their bilious crew
Have doff’d their hats, and made their bow to you.

composed 4 February 1884
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 February 1884

 

492 Our Father’s Birthday

We fain would decorate this day
With garlands choice and sweet;
Of rich ambrosia we would lay
A tribute at your feet.
But nobler gifts we now impart, 5
Embellished with our love,
And trust the incense of the heart
May not unwelcome prove.

CHORUS.

Hail, hail, all hail to your natal day!
May it many times return; 10
And your life-lamp, glowing fresh and gay,
With health and vigor burn.

Long may you live our lives to bless,
And our young steps to guide,
Until with Zion’s righteousness, 15
Your soul is satisfied—
Till you fulfil your great desires,
In your life-labors done;
When up to all that God requires
His people shall be one. 20

CHORUS.

Hail, hail, all hail to your natal day!
May it many times return;
And your life-lamp, glowing fresh and gay,
With health and vigor burn.

composed ca. 3 April 1884

 

493 Address by E. R. Snow Smith

MY BROTHER DEAR, AND FAMILY:
We’re told
In holy writ, the Patriarchs of old,
When full of years, moved by parental love
And by a holy unction from above,
Convened their offspring—God given heritage, 5
Increased to multitudes thro’ lengthened age,
And by the right the Priesthood’s powers invest,
Their children and their children’s children blessed.

Adam, alias Michael, won his place
As prince and founder of the human race. 10
By the great Ruler of the earth and heaven
The first commandment unto Adam given
Was “multiply.” And standing at the head
Of all the generations that shall tread
This nether earth—his duties to fulfil 15
In prompt obedience to the Father’s will,
The new-born earth he labored to adorn,
And unto him were sons and daughters born.

We read that Abel, Adam’s son, was slain
By his aspiring, jealous brother, Cain; 20
And Cain was cursed; and yet he wears his “mark”—
As seen by David Patten, he was dark,
When, pointing to his face of glossy jet,
Cain said, “You see the curse is on me yet.”
The first of murderers, now he fills his post, 25
And reigns as king o’er all the murd’rous host.
And time moved on, and Adam’s seed spread forth,
Erecting cities on their Eden earth.
Then human life was long, and not as now,
When man comes forth in haste, and makes his bow 30
Upon the stage of life, and then is gone,
While death, the porter, drops the curtain down.
Once men built pyramids that now defy

The crumbling elements of earth and sky.
The pyramid of Cheops, which now stands 35
A bold historic problem for all lands,
Has long the wasting power of time defied,
And stands erect in architectural pride.
Good men had time their skill to gratify,
And wicked ones their impudence to ply, 40
As they on Shinar’s plains in wrath essayed
To climb to heaven without Jehovah’s aid.

Then centuries defined the age of man
Which now is measured by a narrow span.
The course of time, long ebbing downward low, 45
The Gospel fulness soon will cause to flow;
All ebbing tides must to progression bow—
Upward and onward is the watchword now;
Prophetic record tells us, “as a tree,
In time to come, the life of man shall be.” 50

The eternal fiat had been sealed on high,
Adam a law had broken—he must die.
Long centuries with him had multiplied,
He fain would bless his offspring ere he died
In Adam-Ondi-Ahman, where he dwelt, 55
Where at a sacred altar oft he knelt,
On which he oft had offered sacrifice,
But knew not why till from beyond the skies
An angel came and gave the reason why
God thus commanded: ’twas to typify 60
The sacrifice of God’s beloved Son,
Which was to be in time’s meridian.

Abroad to all the cities on the earth
A royal proclamation issued forth.
Responsive, lo! their numerous offspring come 65
To mother Eve’s and father Adam’s home.
Clothed with the Priesthood’s power, the Patriarch stood
And blessed the reverent, waiting multitude,
In Adam-Ondi-Ahman, Eden’s mart,
Zion’s metropolis and priestly court. 70

With retrospective pride we’re wont to praise
Illustrious characters of former days,
While here, the fact can never be ignored,
The ancient order is to us restored;
For here, a father standing at the head, 75
Treads the same path as did the ancients tread.

While age is tracing furrows on his cheek,
And silver locks increasing years bespeak,
As Adam, Noah, Abra’m, Jacob, blessed
Their offspring then, he now has been impressed 80
To call together all his kindred line,
To instruct and bless by right and power divine;
And Time’s historic pages yet will know,
As Patriarch, our own Lorenzo Snow.
In coming generations yet unborn 85
Shall mighty men of God his line adorn;
Pure, noble minded men, who shall possess
The sterling worth that lives mankind to bless,
Who, through obedience and sacrifice,
Will to the glories of the Godhead rise. 90

And holy women, full of faith and love,
Who’ll train their offspring for the courts above;
Mothers of men—mothers in Israel, too,
True to themselves—to sacred cov’nants true.
This life’s beginning points to where it ends; 95
The first direction up or downward tends;
Hence, on the mother’s impress much depends.

And may his sons and daughters ever be
Unrivaled samples of integrity,
Clothed with the power true Gospel faith imparts, 100
To heal the sick and cheer desponding hearts—
His sons be numbered with the valiant ones,
Who fought the fight of faith and won their crowns;
His daughters filled with wisdom, truth and grace,
Do saintly honor to their noble race. 105

All hail to Brother Snow! Long life and cheer,
With blessings multiplied from year to year.
May his posterity, increasing, be
As numerous as the sands beside the sea,
“And as the stars of heaven for multitude.” 110
The well-wrought model of his life shall be
A motive guide to his posterity;
A monitor to which, if they give heed,
To endless increase, endless lives will lead.
And yet his life, with conscious wrong unspotted, 115
Is more or less with imperfections dotted.
No mortal man, though staunch in that direction,
But fails to reach the zenith of perfection.

* * * * *

His organizing skill has brought to bear
The strength of union—potent everywhere. 120
With these* good brethren, working side by side,
Through mighty effort he has changed the tide
Of narrow, individual policy,
For the broad base of conjoint unity—
To make the Saints, in temporal interests, one, 125
And independent of old Babylon.

*Members of the Council
[this asterisk and note appeared with the original poem]
You’ve proved the possibility; the fact
Which you’ve developed will remain intact.
And yet the Order lives! ’Tis truly so,
Its healthy breathings and pulsations show; 130
And late transpiring indications tell
The Association’s heart is beating well.
It operates, though on a smaller scale
Than ere O. J. H. did its rights assail.
Long-waiting Justice now comes boldly on, 135
And vetoes what aggressive force had done—
Shows up the assessment in a fitting light,
Affirming B. C. Co-op. scrip was right;
Bids “Uncle Sam” retrieve the cruel blunder,
By paying back, with interest, all the plunder. 140

And now, Lorenzo’s children, just a few
Of my reflections I address to you.
The powers of darkness now are all astir;
“Be wise to-day, ’tis madness to defer.”
Choose well your parts—mark where true valor lies, 145
And set your stakes to win the highest prize;
Honor to whom ’tis due, be prompt to give,
And in return, you honor will receive.
Rein up your courage, boldly stem the tide
Of worldly folly and of worldly pride. 150
Let love and union, your fraternal pledge,
Bolt every passage from the severing wedge.
Pursue no object when it downward leans—
Trust no result to sanctify the means.
Beware of jealousy, the green-eyed elf, 155
That makes the food on which it feeds itself;
And scorn hypocrisy, the infernal bane,
That prays like Abel and performs like Cain.

On earth exist two counterpoising firms,
And each proposes its peculiar terms. 160
Two, only two exist. O, then, be wise—
Know for yourselves in which your interest lies;
One, only one, will stand the trying test,
In this your all you safely may invest.

Who seeks for happiness in worldly gain 165
May be successful, yet succeed in vain,
And prove the adage sadly true, in which
“Our very wishes give us not our wish.”
Search o’er the world; you’ll find the happiest hearts
Are those who most of happiness impart. 170
The key to happiness is well expressed
In these few words, “IN BLESSING BE THOU BLEST.”

Review your father’s life since first he took
Upon himself the Great Redeemer’s yoke.
From duty’s post and God’s eternal law, 175
No threat can drive him, and no bribe can draw;
Whether at home on missions, or abroad,
’Tis all the same with him—the work of God.
His wise example unto you will be
A rich behest—A ROYAL LEGACY.

composed ca. 7 May 1884
published in Biography and Family Record of Lorenzo Snow, 1884

 

494 Bridal Tribute
Respectfully Inscribed to—-They Know Whom

We wish you all the happiness
That in a wedded life can be
Obtained through constant faithfulness
For time and all eternity.

Within a Temple’s sacred shrine, 5
When knelt beside an altar there,
By rite performed as God enjoins,
You two became a wedded pair.

Commenced aright:—now step by step
The upward leading track pursue; 10
Should obstacles arise, look up
And keep the royal end in view.

Let God be first in all your thoughts—
To do His will your highest aim;
And if obedient to His laws, 15
His special blessings you may claim.

New obligations wait you now,
As wedded souls two joined as one;
Your separate int’rests all combine,
Though in two lives your duties run. 20

To form connubial happiness,
Let love commingle with respect;
And undissembling honesty
A mutual confidence protect.

And now our blessing we extend 25
In wishing you the rich behest
That noble deeds and efforts bring,
And say, “In blessing be you blest.”

composed 20 December 1884
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 February 1885

 

495 O, Our Nation!—Alas, for Thee!

Alas, our Nation!—Once our pride and boast—
Once, of all nations, blest and honor’d most.
Thy noble bearing and thy gracious air,
Drew thee respect and praise from everywhere;
Thy sense of justice, shown in every act, 5
Was proof that Equal Rights were held intact.
Then Freedom’s banner, spotless of a stain,
Waved, a true signal o’er thy broad domain,
And called th’ oppress’d in all the world to come
And share protection and a freeman’s home. 10
Thy glorious Constitution form’d a test—
A crowning aegis ’neath which all were blest;—
That sacred instrument you now ignore,
Was not man-made, nor born of classic lore,
But noble-hearted men whom God inspired, 15
Framed your protective base as He required.

And that “dear flag” we’ve loved so much—so long,
Full oft has been our fav’rite theme in song:
But then t’was pure, and waved in majesty,
Unstained, untarnished by mobocracy. 20
How sadly now we’re forced to look upon
That “dear old Flag” and think of scenes bygone!
With blood of innocence it wears a stain,
And now ’tis trailing in the dust again;
Since Change, with Time, has made a hurried tread, 25
And through our Nation vile contagion spread.

The sacred legacy our fathers won
Under the leadership of Washington—
The rich behest that guarantees to all
A sure protection from oppression’s thrall— 30
The rights of conscience and of freedom rife
In the pursuit of happiness and life,
Is by judicial subterfuge disgraced,
And from your Charter, wantonly erased.

What of your Congress? How do members rate 35
Compared with statesmen of an early date?
Far more like children in their mimic plays
Than sober, thinking men of other days,
Charged with a great Republic’s destinies,
Involving sacred rights and liberties. 40
To win the populace, and on it ride,
You’ve manufactured tools for suicide:
Instead of offices confer’d, they’re sold:
And what of fitness? ’Tis the price of gold.

You drove us from you, and our native soil: 45
We went as fugitives—you took the spoil.
Not knowing where—we went like one of old,
Out, where your jurisdiction did not hold;
And now, our Nation verily must know,
We here, were citizens of Mexico; 50
And though in exile—to your int’rest true,
Our soldiers won these mountain vales for you:
And then you joined us to yourself, to be
A part a portion of you, bodily:

And you, with suicidal wrath, at will, 55
Have pounced on Utah your own blood to spill,
And persecution aims its madden’d strife
Against the purest springs of mortal life,
Where home, the magnet of a nation’s weal
That holds the unction of true loyal zeal, 60
Is being ruptur’d with impunity
By base intrusions on its sanctity,
While wanton prowlers boast of liberty.

While you the vile and the lascivious screen,
And harass men of pure and noble mien— 65
Husbands and sires, in dens incarcerate—
Once happy families make desolate,
We know your minions have no chains to bind
Or shape the conscience, nor t’enslave the mind.
But O, our Nation! worse will you betide, 70
For you are now committing suicide!

Hear it, ye Saints! Your stern integrity
Is more to you than mortal life can be:
And now, it matters less that fools deride,
Than when our Savior “bowed His head and died.” 75
Th’ Almighty God we worship lives on high—
There’s nothing hid from His all-searching eye.
Come life or death, prosperity or ill,
We’re bound by covenant to do His will;
And when the wicked down to hell are thrust, 80
You’ll rise and reign triumphant with the just.

published in Deseret News, 8 May 1885

 

496 Requiem

The glorious reign of Freedom past,
Her flag has fallen down half-mast!
Let every patriot drop a tear
And weep, yes weep, o’er Freedom’s bier.
Toll—toll—toll—toll the bell; 5
Hark, hark—’tis Freedom’s funeral knell!

Oppression’s votaries stand aghast
To see Columbia’s flag half-mast,
While loyal vet’rans are bereft—
Their charter’d rights asunder cleft. 10
Toll—toll—toll—toll the bell,
And let the mournful echo swell.

In Utah vile oppression rules,
And base, lascivious heartless tools,
Invade the pure domestic shrine 15
And seek to sever bonds divine.
Toll—toll—toll—toll the bell,
And once fair Utah’s grievance tell.

Yes, where the libertine is free,
And boasts his scorn of chastity, 20
While chaste and upright, godly men
Are immolated in the “pen.”
Tolls—tolls—tolls—tolls the bell—
List, list, and hear the solemn knell.

Where loving husbands and their wives 25
Had pledg’d their honor and their lives,
Each to the other to prove true
In this, and life eternal too.
Tolls—tolls—tolls—tolls the bell—
All heaven will listen to the knell. 30

Where children, cherish’d by their sire,
Shared the protection they require,
Now of his fostering care bereft,
Are with their sorrowing mothers left.
Tolls—tolls—tolls—tolls the bell, 35
Where Right and Justice may not dwell.

Polluted hands have struck the blow
Which laid the form of Freedom low;
They tore her garlands from her head,
And forged blockades to check her tread. 40
Tolls—tolls—tolls—tolls the bell
Where Freedom once was proud to dwell.

composed ca. 4 July 1885
published in Deseret Evening News, 9 July 1885

 

497 The Beginning and the End

Dark clouds have gather’d aft and fore—
The lightnings flash, the thunders roar—
The fierce blasts sweeping here and there,
The stately forest trees uptear,
While raging elements at war, 5
The lovely face of nature mar.

* * * * * *

“Offences must needs come”—but lo!
God has pronounced a telling woe
“On them by whom they come”—the evil
Who choose and love to serve the devil. 10

But there remains a glorious rest
For those by wickedness oppress’d—
For all the faithful Saints of God,
Who own His hand and kiss the rod;
All who in faithfulness abide, 15
With texture and with heart strings tried;
E’en such as now in sorrow mourn
Their sires and husbands ruthless borne,
Unstain’d with guilt or crime, to dwell
Within a prison’s loathsome cell. 20

Ye Saints of God, fear not—stand fast,
Nor cringe nor cower before the blast;
And Oh, be wise, and understand
The treach’rous kiss and velvet hand,
Which proffer life and liberty 25
At cost of your integrity.
You’d better risk the lion’s den,
Or the thrice-heated furnace; then
On Israel’s God you can depend,
Be true, and God will be your friend, 30
And you far better sacrifice
Your mortal life, than jeopardize
Your ALL— yes, ALL will be at stake,
If you your sacred covenants break;
And mark! this demon-like ordeal, 35
God will o’errule for Zion’s weal.

Prosperity has never served
To sift out those who heedless swerved
From duty—those whose lives were spent
In carving their aggrandizement, 40
Or, pampering a morbid taste,
Let time and talents go to waste;
The hypocrite, with cordial kiss,
More dang’rous than the serpent’s hiss—
The fawning sycophant, whose smile 45
Is fashion’s trade mark, to beguile,
And for this purpose, God will use
Those whom the rights of man abuse.

* * * * *

The reckless crusade will not cease,
Nor will the righteous dwell in peace, 50
Till all the hypocrites, with fear,
Dismay and trembling disappear;—
Till lying hordes, in silent gloom,
With traitors, meet their horrid doom—
Till Freedom, Truth and Justice reign, 55
And equal rights for all sustain;—
Till all true Saints, as one, unite
To serve the Lord with mind and might.
Then will the powers of Heav’n come down
And Zion’s courts with glory crown.

composed ca. 24 July 1885
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 August 1885

 

498 Welcome

Welcome Brothers, Welcome Sisters,
One and all, we kindly greet,
Mingle in our exercises
Join us in our social treat.

In this evening’s recreations, 5
May our thoughts and feelings blend,
And in holy aspirations,
To the throne above, ascend.

Let us each, and all, aspiring
For the pearl of greatest worth; 10
Learn the practice of acquiring
Good, from sinless sports and mirth.

Not forgetting, though, improvement,
Is the motto which we claim,
The grand acme of perfection, 15
Is our magnet and our aim.

Thus we’ll be prepared to honor
Every high and sacred trust;
And at last be crowned with glory,
In the mansions of the just.

published in Utah Journal, 26 August 1885

 

499 Psalm
[“Thou who didst command Abraham”]

1 Thou who didst command Abraham to leave his native land, and to
separate himself from his father’s house; Thou art my God.

2 Thou who didst so love the world as to give Thine Only Begotten
to suffer and die, to open the way that all who yielded obedience to the Gospel He established might attain to life eternal, Thou art my trust.

3 Thou who hast sent forth Thine angel and restored the Gospel in
the fulness of its powers and ordinances, with Apostles, Prophets, Pastors and Evangelists, as at the beginning; and hast again committed the keys which Jesus conferred on Peter, unto Thy servants, Thou art the God whom I worship.

4 Thou who hast sent forth Thy servants clothed with authority to
gather the honest of heart to the land which Thou hast appointed for the gathering of the last days, and the establishing of Thy Kingdom, Thou wilt accomplish Thy purposes.

5 In Thine own wisdom, and with outstretched hand, Thou hast
brought thy people to these mountain vales; and here Thou hast inspired the hearts and nerved the hands of thy sons and daughters, and through thy blessing on their labors the sterile and forbidding desert is yielding in its strength, and the barren wilderness is blossoming as the rose.

6 Driven from the land that gave us birth, to the western wilds, for an
asylum of peace and religious liberty, which for a season we enjoyed unmolested; “the accusers of the brethren,” like blood-thirsty hounds, scented our track o’er the pathless desert, and sought out our far-off retreat.

7 With wanton eyes and greedy hearts they lusted for the possession
of the hard-earned fruits of our untiring industry, and with measures concocted in the pest-house of deceit, supported by falsehood, they have sought to supplant us.

8 All this, O Lord, Thou hast suffered, that the wicked may fill their
cup, and that the Scriptures may be fulfilled. We know that persecution is a portion of the legacy which the Messiah left to those who would follow Him.

9 Therefore we will acknowledge thy hand, and without fear or
faltering, firmly maintain our integrity.

10 Though the rod of oppression is laid heavily upon us, and every
avenue for escape should seem closed against us, with no hand but Thine to deliver, Thou, O God, wilt in Thine own time and way bring deliverance.

11 Though the dark billows of persecution swell high o’er us, and
threaten to swallow us up, we know assuredly that when they shall have accomplished thy purpose, Thou wilt say to the proud, upheaving waves, “Thus far shalt thou go, and no farther.”

12 Though the wicked rise up in wrath against thine anointed, and in
bold defiance threaten to destroy thy Priesthood from the earth as in a former period, Thou, Lord, wilt provide a shield, and although it should be, as it were in the last extremity, Thou hast established it upon the earth for the last time, and it will never be removed.

13 “Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with
righteousness.”

composed August 1885
published in Woman’s Exponent, 15 September 1885

 

500 For Little Miss May Pearl Richards

May Pearl did fondly love her father—
O, how he loved his darling dear;
And now he loves his precious daughter
More than he did when living here.

And Pearl’s good father loves her mother; 5
And loves his own kind mother dear;
But he’s so pure they cannot see him,
Although he oft comes very near.

He wants his little precious darling— 10
So kind and loving, pure and good;
Grow up to be a useful woman—
A noble type of woman-hood.

And he desires his only offspring
To be a Saint, and serve the Lord; 15
That with her Pa and Ma, hereafter
She’ll have a faithful Saint’s reward.

composed in July 1886

 

501 A Brother’s and a Sister’s Love
Respectfully and Expressively Painted in Poetry

THE RESPONSE

Hon. L. Snow:

Your precious letter, Brother Dear,
So kind, so loving, drew a tear
From eyes whence tears refuse to flow
Except for others’ weal or woe.

The tall expressions drawn by thee 5
Seem far too grand t’ apply to me;
But I admit all, all is true,
As you portray’d my love for you.

Your upright course has ever spread
A halo on the path I tread: 10
Your firm, unwavering life, from youth
To age, has been for God and truth.

From north to south—from east to west,
Your willing feet, the sands have pressed—
O’er boist’rous seas and ocean’s wave, 15
You’ve gone—for what? Men’s souls to save.

In your life-record there is not
One silent page, nor one foul blot:
Eternal Archives yet will tell
Your every page is written well. 20

Yes, those excelsior interviews,
Refreshing as Mount Hermon’s dews,
Bade thought on lofty flights to soar,
Beyond the reach of worldly lore.

Now, in accordance with the fate 25
Of ancient Saints, the prison grate—
The prison walls, and prison fare
Attest your faith and patience there.

Thus was our Savior’s legacy—
He said, “All those who follow me, 30
Shall suffer persecution:” and
He now is proving who will stand.

“Obedience and sacrifice”
Secure to you th’ immortal prize:
You’ll share with Christ His glorious reign, 35
And to the Godhead you’ll attain.

God grant us wisdom, grace and power,
To bravely stand the trying hour,
Till Zion, pure, redeem’d, and free,
Moves on in peaceful majesty. 40

Lovingly, your sister,
E. R. SNOW SMITH.

ADDENDA.

We need not scale Parnassus’ height
For inspiration’s aid to indite;
Nor to Arcadia’s groves retire,
To court the muse or tune the lyre.

The inspiration God imparts, 45
T’ instruct our heads and warm our hearts,
Far better light and warmth diffuses
Than e’er obtained from Pagan Muses.

composed 4 or 7 October 1886
published in Deseret News, 3 November 1886

 

502 “May your children”

May your children, true and faithful
In the Gospel, ever prove—
Strong of faith, and great in goodness—
Trained in wisdom’s way to move.

n.d.

 

503 Retrospective and Prospective

For many centuries gone by, ’twixt heav’n
And earth, silence had reigned. The voice of God,
The great Eternal, who called Abram forth
To leave his kindred and his native land,
Had not, for ages, reached a mortal ear. 5
Fools in their hearts declared, “There is no God.”

Though Jesus said, “Except you’re one, you are
Not mine,” the christian sects, who claim to have
The Gospel as He taught, were multiplied,
And each contending for the preference, 10
And all maintained, the body of the Lord
Is represented by the church on earth.
But, if these sects can be acknowledg’d His,
What a vast multitude of bodies? Else,
His one, must be in many fragments torn. 15

The wheel of Time roll’d on, and met the verge
Of a new Dispensation—this the last—
The closing one—the set, th’ appointed time
For God to do a strange—a wonder work,
Preparatory to Messiah’s reign. 20

Prefacing this august, sublime event,
The long, long silence must be broken, and
The voice of God, on earth be heard once more.
As was His wont whene’er He converse held
With mortal man, He’d prophets at command 25
To bear His messages and teach His will.
For this grand purpose, He had raised up one—
An unsophisticated, honest youth,
Whom He had chosen and had foreordain’d
To see His face, His voice to hear—to take 30
The lead in the last Dispensation of
A fallen world—to stop the downward ebb
Of life’s corrupted stream, and bid it through
A purifying channel, upward flow—
To organize the Church of Jesus Christ 35
Precisely by the former pattern given,
With Prophets and Apostles, governments;
With gifts and pow’rs to heal—authority
To cast out devils, and to speak in tongues:
A Church which Jesus Christ will own as His. 40

The Prophet did God’s bidding, tho’ opposed
By hellish wrath and human ignorance.
Unfetter’d and undwarf’d by man-made creeds,
His mind soar’d upward to the living Fount
Of truth and wisdom, knowledge, faith and power. 45
He master’d languages and sciences,
And principles of vast eternal weight—
A worker and a student till his death.
Having perform’d a mission great and grand,
He sealed his testimony with his blood. 50

But yet the Church of Christ of latter-days,
Which by the Prophet God established, lives,
And will, altho, opposed by earth and hell.
Though persecution, which our Savior said
Would be the lot of those who follow Him, 55
Has oft, full oft, with arms outstretch’d the path
Bestrode, the Church has never made a halt.
Oft times from place to place by mobbers driven,
And last of all they drove us from Nauvoo,
To go as Abram did we knew not where, 60
Perchance they wished—they hoped—they thought
We’d starve and die, and buzzards fatten on
Our flesh—our bones be left to bleach upon
The lone wild waste, untrod by human foot;
But God was with us and they knew it not. 65
He, by His noble Chieftain, Brigham Young,
With wisdom from the courts on high endowed,
Led to these isolated mountain vales—
A desert wilderness, a sterile waste—
A crowning climax of all dreariness. 70
But peace was here, sweet peace, our legal claim,
Usurp’d by those who forced our exile flight.
For centuries the soil unstir’d had slept
The sleep of death, while none but savage feet
Had kiss’d the sod. No tree nor shrub adorned 75
This Salt Lake City Plat. The mountains then
With their attraction’s uncontested charm,
Drew to their summits all of showers, and left
The valleys dry.

And here we were; The Church
Of God, the Saints of Latter-day, must draw 80
Forth from this death-wrap’d soil, a sustenance,
Or perish. What a predicament! Who
Of mortal mould unarm’d with mighty faith
In the eternal God, but would have quailed
Before the ghastly prospect’s sullen scowl? 85
Not so the Saints; in the Almighty arm
We put our trust; with willing hearts and hands,
Nerv’d by a living faith, we worked and prayed,
And with thanksgiving ate our scanty bread.

We dug the channels for the water’s course, 90
And tapp’d the creeks (the creeks were very few
And far between) and strewed their waters on
The thirsty land, which drank, and craved, and drank
Till it revived and brought forth nourishment.
We tore the saplings from the mountain’s brow, 95
Which grew the lovely shade trees that adorn
Our cities’ side-walks, and in summer heat,
Produce a grateful, cool, refreshing shade.

Yes, such it was, and what is Utah now?
The boast of friends, and envy of our foes. 100
Who wrought the change? God and His faithful Saints,
And made “the desert blossom as the rose.”
A crusade now inaugurated in
Our midst, retards progression’s onward move.
But what disturbers of our peace shall do 105
Against the Church, will be o’erruled for good.

The Almighty’s drama will enacted be—
Each acts a part—to all, the choice is free.
Our persecutors make a sad mistake,
They earn our pity by the choice they make: 110
All in the harvest reap the crop we sow,
And they in theirs, will garner only woe.
Who shed the blood of innocence will feel
The wrath of God, from which there’s no appeal.
Our foes, in blindness, now exult and think 115
The Church, beneath their lash, is bound to sink:
Crushed, it may seem, in their distorted view,
And still be gaining strength and prestige too:
From vile oppression’s bondage ’twill come forth
In glorious light, with pow’r to gladden earth. 120

But ere the drama’s close, and curtains fall,
Will good result from scenes which now appall—
This crusade furnace-heat will purify
The Church from hypocrites, and all that lie—
From those whose hearts are set on worldly gain, 125
And all who sacred cov’nants break in twain.
Then Truth and Justice will resume their throne,
And man’s oppressiveness shall be unknown.
The Son of God, the Prince will come again,
With all His Saints, in majesty to reign.

composed January 1887
published in Deseret News, 9 February 1887

 

504 Mrs. M. H. Munn, Beloved Exile

Be firm and valiant, Sister Dear
Dark clouds disperse by dint of cheer
The Lord is testing you to prove
Your faith your texture and your love.

Although the rugged path you tread, 5
To follow as the saviour led;
His guiding hand will bring you thro’,
What seems impossible to you.

We stoop to Conquer, and we go
The great and wise of earth, below, 10
That we hereafter may arise
And take the richest, highest prize.

Be brave—my lovely Sister,—brave
And never fear Time’s tidal wave;
The hardest lessons will produce 15
The best results for future use.

’Twas not by chance you came to earth
God had a purpose in your birth,
And chose for you a royal head
With you the “golden streets” to tread. 20

God fills his head with pow’r and grace,
Life’s rugged scenes to boldly face,
With noble bearing—firm and true,
To God—His Priesthood, and to you—

A hero in the glorious cause— 25
A bold dispenser of its laws,
Sent by the pow’rs above, to wield
The sword of Truth and bear its shield;

Ere long the day of trial o’er
The Saints will dwell in peace once more; 30
The martyr’d ones will oft be there
And you and yours their blessings share.

composed 17 June 1887

 

505 My Dear Sister Annie Hyde

I wish you blessings—not a few;
Increasing year by year,
With God’s unfailing wisdom, too,
Your bark of life to steer.

I wish you plenty crowned with peace— 5
With growing usefulness;
That as your faith and works increase,
You’ll gain in pow’r to bless.

May years to you be multiplied,
And when your course is run; 10
Your heart be fully satisfied,
Knowing your work is done.

n.d.

 

506 Three Hundred Graves in Pisgah

Pisgah was then a wilderness,
Where none but redmen’s feet had trod,
Until its dearest sands were pressed
By the mob-driven Saints of God.

We’ll stop and drop a loving tear 5
O’er those we leave in sacred trust;
Three hundred graves are huddled here,
And each enwraps a sacred dust.

Robb’d of our wealth, and driven forth
From homes, and lands, and country dear, 10
As exiled wanderers in the earth,
We stopp’d to rest a season here.

But sickness came and added care
To destitution’s pressing woe,
And death, soon following, met us there, 15
And laid three hundred dear ones low.

Why are they buried on the wild?
O, tell us wherefore did they roam?
Why not the father, mother, child,
Lie in their sepulchers at home? 20

’Twas persecution’s purple rod
That drove them to the wilderness;
And why? They dared to honor God
And do the works of righteousness.

And now we leave them here to rest, 25
As Abram went not knowing where;
We turn our faces to the west,
And hope for PEACE and JUSTICE there.

composed 29 July 1887
published in Reminiscences of Latter-day Saints, 1888

 

507 Evening Thoughts

The winds blow low—the winds blow high,
And threatening storm-clouds gather near—
And Satan’s hosts are marshal’d nigh,
Perchance to foul the atmosphere.

Where, where have truth and justice fled? 5
Why are they not in session found?
Their posts seem occupied instead,
By adverse spirits lurking ’round,

But truth is true, and justice just,
And such they ever will remain; 10
And ’tis decreed, ere long, they must
Return and fill their seats again.

It seems that hell has opened wide
And sent its vilest imps abroad,
To vilify, impugn, deride, 15
And persecute the Saints of God.

But God is God and will sustain
The glorious work he has begun,
Till peace shall from its rising, reign
Unto the setting of the sun. 20

Fear not, ye Saints—you who indeed
Are living as the Lord requires,
To sacred cov’nants giving heed,
And every word which God inspires.

An ordeal furnace near at hand, 25
Will test your faith and texture too;
But God will give you grace to stand,
And He will help you safely through.

And when the winds and tempests blow,
And the primed furnace vents its heat; 30
Whatever comes, ’tis yours to know,
Your triumph yet will be complete.

Not so with those who, falt’ring, break
The sacred vows they’ve enter’d in;
With life and with their all at stake, 35
They seek the world’s applause to win.

They’ll draw your saintly sympathy
Over the hapless choice they make;
For when ’tis all too late, they’ll see
They made a ruinous mistake. 40

O that we all would watch and pray,
And ever true and faithful be—
Move on and upward day by day,
And nearer, O, our God, to Thee.

composed 24 August 1887
published in Woman’s Exponent, 1 September 1887

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