Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO A CHILD, THE DAUGHTER OF A FRIEND, by JOHN GARDINER CALKINS BRAINARD



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TO A CHILD, THE DAUGHTER OF A FRIEND, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: I pray thee by thy mother's face
Last Line: As holy be thy song.
Subject(s): Children; Childhood


I PRAY thee by thy mother's face,
And by her look, and by her eye,
By every decent matron grace
That hovered round the resting-place
Where thy young head did lie;
And by the voice that soothed thine ear,
The hymn, the smile, the sigh, the tear
That matched thy changeful mood;
By every prayer thy mother taught --
By every blessing that she sought,
I pray thee to be good.
Is not the nestling, when it wakes
Its eye upon the wood around,
And on its new fledged pinions takes
Its taste of leaves and boughs and brakes--
Of motion, sight, and sound--
Is it not like the parent? Then
Be like thy mother, child, and when
Thy wing is bold and strong,
As pure and steady be thy light--
As high and heavenly be thy flight
As holy be thy song.





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