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Sleep on My Child.


By R. J. H.

Sleep on, my child, in peaceful rest,
While lovely visions round thee play;
No care or grief has touched thy breast,
Thy life is yet a cloudless day.

Far distant is my childhood's home —
No mother's smiles — no father's care!
Oh! how I'd love again to roam,
Where once my little playmates were!

Sleep on, thou hast not felt the chain;
But though 'tis yet unmingled joy,
I may not see those smiles again,
Nor clasp thee to my breast, my boy.

And must I see thee toil and bleed!
Thy manly soul in fetters tied;
'Twill wring thy mother's heart indeed —
Oh! would to God that I had died!

That soul God's own bright image bears —
But oh! no tongue thy woes can tell;
Thy lot is cast in blood and tears,
And soon these lips must say — farewell!