Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE SONG OF EVE TO CAIN, by JOHN STERLING (1806-1844)



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THE SONG OF EVE TO CAIN, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Oh! Rest, my baby, rest
Last Line: Oh! Rest, my darling, rest!
Subject(s): Adam & Eve; Bible; Cain


Oh! rest, my baby, rest!
The day
Is glowing down the west;
Now tired of sunny play
Upon thy mother's breast
Oh! rest, my darling, rest!

Thou first-born child of man,
In thee
New joy for us began,
Which seem'd all dead to be,
When that so needful ban
From Eden exiled man.

But more than Paradise
Was ours,
When thou with angel eyes,
Amid our blighted flowers
Wast born, a heavenly prize
Unknown in Paradise.

My happy garden, thou,
Where I
Make many a hopeful vow,
And every hour espy
New bloom on each young bough;
My sinless tree art thou.

I fearless reap thy fruit
Of bliss;
And I who am thy root,
Am to the air to kiss
The gleams that o'er thee shoot;
And fed, I feed thy fruit.

Thy father's form and pride
And thought,
In thee yet undescried,
Shall soon be fully wrought,
Grow tall, and bright, and wide,
In thee our hope and pride.

Nay, do not stir, my child,
Be still;
In thee is reconciled
To man heaven's righteous will.
To thee the curse is mild,
And smites not thee, my child.

To us our sin has borne
Its doom.
From light dethroned and torn,
'Twas ours to dwell in gloom;
But thou, a better morn,
By that dark night art borne.

Thou shalt, my child, be free
From sin,
Nor taste the fatal tree,
For thou from us shalt win
A wisdom cheap to thee;
So thou from ill be free!

My bird, my flower, my star,
My boy!
My all things fair that are,
My spring of endless joy,
From thee is heaven not far,
From thee, its earthly star.

So, darling, shalt thou grow
A man,
While we shall downward go,
Descend each day a span,
And sink beneath the wo
Of deaths from sin that grow.

And thou, perhaps, shalt see
A race
Brought forth by us, like thee;
Though strength like thine, and grace,
In none shall ever be
Of all whom earth can see.

And thou amid mankind
Shalt move
With glorious form and mind,
In holiness and love;
And all in thee shall find
The bliss of all mankind.

Then rest, my child, oh rest!
The day
Has darken'd down the west.
Thou dream the night away
Upon thy mother's breast;
Oh! rest, my darling, rest!





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