Posts tagged ‘1852’

Tuesday, 28 April 2020

To My Daughter Elizabeth by Mary Ann Hubbard Townsend Bigelow

Two flowers upon one parent stem
Together bloomed for many days,
At length a storm arose, and one
Was blighted, and cut down at noon.

The other hath transplanted been,
And flowers fair as herself hath borne;
She too has felt the withering storm,
Her strength’s decayed, wasted her form.

May he who hears the mourner’s prayer,
Renew her strength for years to come;
Long may He our Lilly spare,
Long delay to call her home.

But when the summons shall arrive
To bear this lovely flower away,
Again may she transplanted be
To blossom in eternity.

There may these sisters meet again,
Both freed from sorrow, sin, and pain;
There with united voices raise,
In sweet accord their hymns of praise;
Eternally his name t’ adore,
Who died, yet lives forevermore.

Weston, Jan. 3, 1852.

From: Bigelow, Mary Ann H. T., The Kings and Queens of England with Other Poems, 1853, S. K. Whipple and Company: Boston, pp. 19-20.

Date: 1852

By: Mary Ann Hubbard Townsend Bigelow (1792-1870)

Wednesday, 25 December 2019

Christmas Comes But Once a Year by Thomas Miller

Those Christmas bells as sweetly chime,
As on the day when first they rung
So merrily in the olden time,
And far and wide their music flung:
Shaking the tall grey ivied tower,
With all their deep melodious power:
They still proclaim to every ear,
Old Christmas comes but once a year.

Then he came singing through the woods,
And plucked the holly bright and green;
Pulled here and there the ivy buds;
Was sometimes hidden, sometimes seen —
Half-buried ‘neath the mistletoe,
His long beard hung with flakes of snow;
And still he ever carolled clear,
Old Christmas comes but once a year.

He merrily came in days of old,
When roads were few, and ways were foul,
Now staggered, — now some ditty trolled,
Now drank deep from his wassail bowl;
His holly silvered o’er with frost.
Nor never once his way he lost,
For reeling here and reeling there,
Old Christmas comes but once a year.

The hall was then with holly crowned,
‘Twas on the wild-deer’s antlers placed;
It hemmed the battered armour round,
And every ancient trophy graced.
It decked the boar’s head, tusked and grim,
The wassail bowl wreathed to the brim.
A summer-green hung everywhere,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

His jaded steed the armed knight
Reigned up before the abbey gate;
By all assisted to alight,
From humble monk, to abbot great.
They placed his lance behind the door,
His armour on the rush-strewn floor;
And then brought out the best of cheer,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

The maiden then, in quaint attire,
Loosed from her head the silken hood,
And danced before the yule-clog fire —
The crackling monarch of the wood.
Helmet and shield flashed back the blaze,
In lines of light, like summer rays,
While music sounded loud and clear,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

What, though upon his hoary head,
Have fallen many a winter’s snow,
His wreath is still as green and red
As ‘t was a thousand years ago.
For what has he to do with care?
His wassail bowl and old arm-chair
Are ever standing ready there,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

No marvel Christmas lives so long,
He never knew but merry hours,
His nights were spent with mirth and song,
In happy homes, and princely bowers;
Was greeted both by serf and lord,
And seated at the festal board;
While every voice cried “Welcome here,”
Old Christmas comes but once a year.

But what care we for days of old,
The knights whose arms have turned to rust,
Their grim boars’ heads, and pasties cold,
Their castles crumbled into dust?
Never did sweeter faces go,
Blushing beneath the mistletoe,
Than are to-night assembled here,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

For those old times are dead and gone,
And those who hailed them passed away,
Yet still there lingers many a one,
To welcome in old Christmas Day.
The poor will many a care forget,
The debtor think not of his debt;
But, as they each enjoy their cheer,
Wish it was Christmas all the year.

And still around those good old times
We hang like friends full loth to part,
We listen to the simple rhymes
Which somehow sink into the heart,
“Half musical, half melancholy,”
Like childish smiles that still are holy,
A masquer’s face dimmed with a tear,
For Christmas comes but once a year.

The bells which usher in that morn,
Have ever drawn my mind away
To Bethlehem, where Christ was born,
And the low stable where He lay,
In which the large-eyed oxen fed;
To Mary bowing low her head,
And looking down with love sincere,
Such thoughts bring Christmas once a year.

At early day the youthful voice,
Heard singing on from door to door,
Makes the responding heart rejoice,
To know the children of the poor
For once are happy all day long;
We smile and listen to the song,
The burthen still remote or near,
“Old Christmas comes but once a year.”

Upon a gayer happier scene,
Never did holly berries peer,
Or ivy throw its trailing green,
On brighter forms than there are here,
Nor Christmas in his old arm-chair
Smile upon lips and brows more fair,
Then let us sing amid our cheer,
Old Christmas still comes once a year.

From: Vizetelly, Henry (ed.), Christmas with the Poets, a Collection of Songs, Carols, and Verses, Relating to the Festival of Christmas, from the Anglo-Normal Period to the Present Time, 1852, David Bogue: London, pp. 164-168.

Date: 1852

By: Thomas Miller (1807-1874)

Sunday, 31 March 2019

The Poet’s Petition by Julian Henry Charles Fane

Kind Public! read me twice or thrice,
And gently treat a timid Muse:
Stern Critics! read me once or twice,
Nor let me miss my wretched dues!
Fair Phoebe, read me fifty times!
Peruse and reperuse my rhymes:
Thy blame or praise I will repay
With interest,—such as kisses may!
But Lizzy! lest thy frown should fall
Upon me, read me not at all!
All else beside may hiss and jeer,
But blame from thee I dare not hear!

From: Fane, Julian, Poems, 1852, William Pickering: London, p. 107.

Date: 1852

By: Julian Henry Charles Fane (1827-1870)

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

The Dream of Freedom by Owen Hargraves Suffolk (Henry Manly)

‘Twas night, and the moonbeams palely fell
On the gloomy walls of a cheerless cell,
Where a captive sought a brief repose
From the bitter pangs of his waking woes,
O’er the dark blue waves of the mighty deep
His spirit roamed in the dream of sleep,
To each well lov’d spot of the peaceful shore,
Where joyous he rov’d in the days or yore.
But still as he roam’d, by Fancy’s pow’r,
To the halcyon scenes of his childhood’s hour,
His heart was crush’d with a weight of pain,
For he seem’d enthrall’d by the captive chain,
And vainly sought ‘mid his native isle
For the glorious light of Freedom’s smile!

The vision chang’d— from the cloudy waves
Of a mountain top that kiss’d the sky.
Be gaz’d beneath on a world of slaves
Array’d in the mantle of Liberty.
He saw a King with a jewelled crown,
Whose brightness rivalled the beams of day,
While thousands knelt at his gorgeous throne,
And own’d the might of his sceptre’s sway;
His will was law to the countless crowd,
Who quail’d ‘neath the monarch’s piercing eye,
That fiercely flash ‘d like the thunder-cloud,
When the lightning reddens the lurid sky.
In the battle-field his arm was might,
And his kingly heart was firm and brave,
But he knew not the charm of Freedom’s light—
He was but Ambition’s willing slave.

Then he turn’d from the monarch’s throne to gaze
On a peaceful cot in a lowly dell,
Which, lit by the sun’s departing rays,
Seem’d a scene of bliss where no woes could dwell,
And sweet was the sound of the ev’ning breeze
As it softly sigh’d through the leafy trees,
And danc’d on the rill which flow’d along
Through the flowery dale with a murm’ring song.
At the cottage door, with locks of white,
An old man gaz’d on the Western sky
And watch’d the sun’s declining light,
As it slowly sunk from his joyless eye.

In that retreat of Heav’n-like calm,
Remote from men and worldly show,
He vainly sought a Lethean charm
From a gloomy past of guilt and woe.
Alas! his spirit even there
Where all around was bright and fair,
Was firmly bound to each crime-stained hour
By vivid Mem’ry’s painful pow’r,
And Conscience o’er the sea of Time
A lurid shade of darkness cast,
And conjur’d up the deeds of crime
That chain’d him to a guilty past.

In the captive’s dream of fancy wild.
He look’d no more on the man of care,
His gaze was fix’d on a beauteous child,
Who knelt at his mother’s feet in pray’r.
Its little hands were clasp’d—its eyes
Uplifted were to Paradise—
Its simple words of faith and love
Were registered in Heav’n above
Recorded there with Angels’ tears
Who wept o’er the hopes the mother built,
For they look’d through the vista of countless years
And saw it fetter’d to future guilt.

And next he saw a beauteous pair,
A gallant youth and maiden fair,
Reclining in a vine-wreathed bower
At evening’s gentle balmy hour.
They vow’d their love should ever be
Immutable as Heav’n’s decree;
And each fond hope of future bliss
Was seal’d with an impassioned kiss.
Their voices seem’d a magic lay
Out-rivalling Eve’s melting gale;
Then beauty was more fair than day.
But oh! their hearts were weak and frail.
Their thrilling words and glances told
Of latent passions deep and wild,
Impute desires uncontroll’d,
That ev’ry virtuous thought beguil’d.

The flowers that scented the evening gale,
The stars that shone from their home above
Wept tears of grief o’er the guilty pair.
For they were the slaves of unholy love.
Then he turned from the things of earth to gaze
On the regions of immortality,
Where seraphs chanted their hymns of praise,
And every tongue was tuned with joy;
There countless myriads cloth’d in white
Were freed from the shackles of sin’s dark hour
To dwell in those blissful realms of light,
Unfetter’d for ever from Satan’s power,
And Freedom’s waters ‘neath many a beam
Of brightness curled on a balmy shore,
And all who quaff’d on the limpid stream
Were loos’d from bondage for evermore.

‘Twas now the harsh-ton’d prison-bell,
Loud echoed through the captive’s cell;
And rous’d him from his misery’s rest,
To all the woes that pierc’d his breast.
He rose—the vision of the night
Again was present to his sight—
He knelt—with fervency he pray’d
Through faith in Christ his gins forgiven,
The narrow boundary of the grave,
Should be the vestibule of Heaven.
Where disenthrall’d from all below,
To dwell beyond the starry sky,
Free from the pains of earthly woe,
In never-ending liberty!


Date: 1852

By: Owen Hargraves Suffolk (Henry Manly) (c1829-after 1866)

Saturday, 13 February 2016

To E.B. by Bessie Rayner Parkes Belloc

At New York.

I saw you seated in your lonely room,
Of human friends forlorn, of spirits full,
Who gave you comfort in your solitude,
And spoke to you in accents beautiful.
Hearing your voice, unknown, my spirit leapt
(Which, knowing, I have learnt to call so dear),
Fond memory of that first hour have I kept,
Tho’ scantly its result recorded here;
But in my heart such thoughts to it belong,
As hath, of its little fount, a river deep and strong.

And now to those far shores, I say, God speed,
Where I have never been, but often now
That anxious heart will of your path take heed,
And daily pray success may crown your brow,
Shedding its glory on your quiet face,
Which needs that baptism, dear friend, no less
That you are strong, upheld in no embrace,
And, deeply natur’d, if unbless’d could bless.

By years of loving hope at length fulfill’d
In our true friendship, by a common aim,
By weariness subdu’d and doubtings still’d,
By joint allegiance to a slander’d name;
By that eternity towards which we speed,
By glorious faiths we would incarnate here,
By ties which nor of space nor time take heed,
I charge you, going hence, to hold me dear.

From: Belloc, Bessie Rayner, Poems, 1852, John Chapman: London, p. 94.

Date: 1852

By: Bessie Rayner Parkes Belloc (1829-1925)

Friday, 3 July 2015

Doggrel Charm by Sara Coleridge

To a little lump of malignity, on being medically assured that it was not a fresh growth, but an old growth splitting.

Split away, split away, split away, split!
Plague of my life, delay pretermit!
Rapidly, rapidly, rapidly go!
Haste ye to mitigate trouble and woe!

Then if you come again, done be His will
Who ordereth all things beyond human skill!
Patience he findeth who seeketh that need
Grace from the fountainhead comes at full speed.

Crack away, tumour, I pray thee to crack,
Just now you seem to be on the right track
But if you’re in the wrong, right let me be,
And promptly submitting to Heaven’s decree


Date: 1852

By: Sara Coleridge (1802-1852)

Saturday, 14 July 2012

The Worst Treason by Victor Hugo

The deepest infamy man can attain,
Is or to strangle Rome, or France enchain ;
Whate’er the place, the land, the city be,
‘Tis to rob man of soul and liberty —
‘Tis with drawn sword the senate to invade,
And murder law, in its own court betrayed.
To enslave the land is guilt of such black dye,
It is ne’er quitted by God’s vengeful eye ;
The crime once done, the day of grace expires,
Heaven’s punishment, which, howe’er slow, ne’er tires,
Begins to march, and comes serene and calm,
With her steel knotted whip beneath her arm.

From: Carrington, Henry, Translations from the Poems of Victor Hugo, 1887, White and Allen: New York and London, p. 110.

Date: 1852 (translation published 1887)

By: Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

Translated By: Henry Carrington (1814-1906)