To A Child Of Fancy

MY little dove, my little lamb,
In whom again a child I am ;
My innocent, on whose fair head
The glories of the unknown are shed ;

Who thro' the laughing summer day
Spendest the rosy hours in play,
Too much by joyous life possest
To give a willing thought to rest ;

Who, with the earliest shades of night,
White-robed, in happy slumbers light,
Recallest in thy stainless calm
An angel resting from its psalm ;

Whence art thou come ? What power could teach
The secret of thy broken speech ?
What agile limb, what stalwart arm,
Like thy sweet feebleness can charm ?

With what a rapture of surprise
This fair world meets thy steadfast eyes,
As if they saw reflected there
Faint images of scenes more fair.

Leaving another heaven behind,
A heaven on earth thou cam'st to find ;
This world, so full of misery,
Opens celestial gates for thee.

Oh ! if thou mightst not e'er grow wise
With the sad learning born of sighs ;
If those soft eyes might never here
Grow dim for any bitter tear.

Vain thought, no creature born of earth
Blooms best 'neath cloudless skies of mirth ;
Only soft rains and clouds can dress
Life's tree with flowers of blessedness

Whate'er the lot thy fate shall give,
At least, while life is mine to live,
Thou shall not lack a share of love,
My little lamb, my little dove !

by Sir Lewis Morris

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