Martin Farquhar Tupper

(July 17, 1810 - November 1889 / London)

The Mother's Lament


My own little darling -- dead!
The dove of my happiness fled!
Just Heaven, forgive,
But let me not live
Now my poor babe is dead:

No more to my yearning breast
Shall that sweet mouth be prest,
No more on my arm
Nestled up warm
Shall my fair darling rest:

Alas, for that dear glazed eye,
Why did it dim or die?
Those lips so soft
I have kiss'd so oft
Why are they ice, oh why?

Alas, little frocks and toys,
Shadows of bygone joys,--
Have I not treasure
Of bitterest pleasure
In these little frocks and toys?

O harrowing sight to behold
That marble-like face all cold,
That small cherish'd form
To be flung to the worm,
Deep in the charnel-mould!

Where is each heart-winning way,
Thy prattle, and innocent play?
Alas, they are gone,
And left me alone
To weep for them night and day:

Yet why should I linger behind?
Kill me too,-- death most kind:
Where can I go
To meet thy blow
And my sweet babe to find?

I know it, I rave half-wild!
But who can be calm and mild
When the deep heart
Is riven apart
Over a dear dead child?

I know it, I should not speak
So boldly,-- I ought to be meek,
But love, it is strong;
And my spirit is wrong,--
Help me, my God! I am weak!

Submitted: Thursday, September 23, 2010
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