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Perchance the years have changed her: yet
alone This picture lingers : still she seems to me The fair, young Angel of my infancy.
Edmund Clarence Stedman
He sang so wildly, did the Boy,
could never tell
But when again we stood below
Beside a cottage door;
A little in the doorway sitting,
Oh, what a loveliness her eyes
THE WIDOW'S MITE
A WIDOW,- she had only one!
Though fretful oft, and weak and small,
The Widow's Mite-aye, so sustain'd,
A little crutch upon the stair
Was music to her.
I saw her then, and now I see
That, though resign'd and cheerful, she Has sorrow'd much:
She has, He gave it tenderly,
Much faith, and, carefully laid by,
A little crutch.
THIS, then, is she,
My mother as she looked at seventeen, When she first met my father. Young in
Younger than spring, without the faintest
trace Of disappointment, weariness, or tear Upon the childlike earnestness and grace Of the waiting face. Those close-wound ropes of pearl (Or common beads made precious by their
use) Seem heavy for so slight a throat to wear; But the low bodice leaves the shoulders bare And half the glad swell of the breast, for news That now the woman stirs within the girl.
Even so, the loops and globes
As a moth beats sidewise
To skirt the irresistible lure
the light Where soon
-ah, now, with cries Of grief and giving-up unto its gain It shrinks no longer nor denies, But dips Hurriedly home to the exquisite heart of
pain, And all is well, for I have seen them plain, The unforgettable, the unforgotten eyes! Across the blinding gush of these good tears They shine as in the sweet and heavy years When by her bed and chair We children gathered jealously to share The sunlit aura breathing myrrh and thyme, Where the sore-stricken body made a clime Gentler than May and pleasanter than rhyme, Holier and more mystical than prayer. God, how thy ways are strange ! That this should be, even this, The patient head Which suffered years ago the dreary change!