My pen cannot describe or tears convey,
The pangs I felt when late I bad farewell;
I view’d in death’s embrace a parent lay,
And heard the passing of the mournful bell.
Nine month’s disease its ravages had made,
E’er death reliev’d her from all sufferings here;
I saw the Sexton with his Iron spade,
Mark out the spot, and place the gloomy bier.
Affecting scene! while recollection last,
I’ll trace the parting of our sad adieu;
Dwell on those scenes that are for ever past,
Tho’ in my mind it troubles fresh renew.
Just before death had wield the fatal blow,
That stops the power of utterance or sigh;
She with a voice angelic soft and low,
Cried, Lord! forgive me e’er my spirit fly.
Oft have I seen my virtuous parent stray,
O’er her lov’d garden pensive and forlorn;
To cull the flowers each succeeding day,
And view the beauties of a summer’s morn.
Scarce did the flower adorn the spot around,
But her hand planted in its proper place;
No fonder lover of those sweets were found,
While she their beauties in her mind cou’d trace.
Three days before her suffering were o’er,
She crav’d assistance to her favourite spot;
And said my roses I shall see no more,
And when I’m absent they will be forgot.
But for her sake a faithful servant toil,
To free the flowers from weeds from morn till night;
Or bring fresh water to the thirsty soil,
To that lov’d spot that gave her oft delight.
Anticipation to the panting heart,
Convey’d the dread decree of fate’s ordain;
To say she must from earthly scenes depart,
And not to them for ever turn again,
Meekness thro’ life had mark’d her for her care,
While resignation claim’d her for her own;
Sometimes her mind wou’d cheerful still appear,
And strive to stifle pain’s afflicting groan.
Oh God! she cried, thy mercy let me crave,
Till life’s short span is taken quite away;
Then may I rest at peace within the grave,
To wait thy summons for the awful day.
Scarce had religion brought sweet hope, to aid
The virtuous victim in the pangs of death;
When soft a guardian angel gently said,
You’ll dwell with me when time extinguish breath.
A few short struggles and the scene was o’er,
Death with his victim flew above the skies;
I shall thro’ life her absence oft deplore,
Till recollection from my memory flies.
The humble cottagers their Mistress bore,
To her cold home each face bedew’d with tears;
She to her mansion to return no more,
For death has silenc’d all her hopes and fears.
Oh! had you seen my good and worthy sire,
In sorrow’s garment his last duty pay;
To her whose virtues did esteem acquire,
Or ease the troubles of a luckless day.
Two sorrowing sons increas’d the gloomy day,
Who will while life remain her loss deplore;
Till recollection from them fade away,
Or erring mortals here do sin no more.
Each little mourner drop’d affection’s tear,
When dust on dust the coffin hid from view;
Their youthful sighs denoted their despair,
When they of Grandma’ bid a long adieu.
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