Anonymous, “Tears of Affection”


“Tears of Affection”


Wak’d are the woodland wild notes sweet,
The dappled morn’s approach to greet;
Yet, while they vibrate on my ear,
Down my sad bosom falls the tear:
I view the smiling landscape round,                                 5
I hear the torrent’s distant sound,
I listen to each song of joy,
I gaze upon the azure sky;
But sick’ning Fancy turns away
From ev’ry charm of perfum’d May.                                 10

Oh! let me seek solemn gloom,
That hovers mournful round the tomb,
Where rest a Parent’s lov’d remains!—
There will I pour in hopeless strains
The bitter plaints of agony,                                                 15
That Fate, unpitying, dooms for me.
Complaint may save my fever’d brain
From starting frenzy’s ghastly train.
That dreary vault, whose womb contains
A sainted Parent’s cold remains,                                        20
His holy shade may hover round,
And listen to each plaintive sound,
That speaks affection’s ceaseless woe;—
May view the streaming tears that flow.

That holy shade perhaps may pour                              25
Calm resignation o’er my breast,
And bid me wait the blissful hour
When ev’ry tortur’d sense shall rest;
When my glad soul to heav’n shall soar,
And drink of sorrow’s cup no more.                                   30


6 torrent A violent or tumultuous flow, onrush, or ‘stream’” (OED).

8 azure “The clear blue colour of the unclouded sky” (OED).

15 plaints “Audible expression of sorrow; such an expression in verse or song, a lament” (OED).

22 plaintive “Afflicted by sorrow; grieving, lamenting; suffering” (OED).

25-26 “On the supposition that our departed friends are permitted to become our Guardian Angels” [Author’s note].

31 Z.  This is marked as one of the poems that was “given to the author by two young friends, who never intended to publish in their own names, but were content to roll down the stream of time, or sink into oblivion with her they loved” (“Advertisement,” Poems on Several Occasions, vol. I, p. ii).

Source: [Mary] Darwall, Poems on Several Occasions, vol. II (Walsall, 1794), pp. 132-134.  [Google Books]

Edited by Ebony Conner

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