To My Daughter Ellen, On Her Wedding Day, March 20, 1859
Ellen, on this glad occasion
I address to you a rhyme,
And in tones of sweet persuasion
Would advise you at this time.
If full measure of enjoyment
You would seek in married life,
Make it daily your employment
To avoid what leads to strife.
Prize, O prize, both now and ever,
Joseph's confidence of love.
See that fits of temper never
Drive him forth from home to rove.
Should he show unlooked for weakness,
Hide the secret in your breast,
And expostulate with meekness
When you have God's Throne addressed.
Always aim to dress with neatness,
Though your clothes be e'er so plain;
Add to this your mother's sweetness,
If you would love's sway maintain.
Should yours prove a life of trial,
May you both still look above.
Exercise in self-denial
Strengthens pre-existing love.
I have found that constant blessing
Springs from troubles sanctified,
And when needs have been most pressing,
God himself those needs supplied.
To His care I therefore leave you,
Bid you lean upon his arm;
May naught soon arise to grieve you,
Naught to damp affection warm.
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