Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO MARY SLEEPING, by ANNA MARIA WELLS



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TO MARY SLEEPING, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Sleep on, sleep on! While yet thy sleep is sweet
Last Line: Sweet as the balmy breath of infant sleep.
Alternate Author Name(s): Wells, A. M.


SLEEP on, sleep on! while yet thy sleep is sweet,
Nor scared by phantoms of world-weary care,
False pleasure, fear, or still delusive hope!
Sweeter the slumber that, perchance, for thee
Thy guardian angel tints with dreamy bliss.
That cherub-smile speaks not of gross delight;
And haply on thy sinless vision now
Celestial forms may gleam, like morning mists
That yet shall brighten into perfect day;
Or to thy tender organs suited, soft
As breath of angels, music floats around; --
Melodious whisperings, that half unfold
The harmonies enfranchised spirits know.
Then, if such visions do thy slumbers bless,
Sleep on, dear, sinless, happy dreamer, sleep;
For I would not the short-lived charm disturb,
Not e'en to meet thine eye's sad earnestness;
Those eyes that shed upon thy baby face
A tender, holy, melancholy light, --
Like seraph Pity guarding Innocence.
And yet more radiant shall their lustre be
When strong by struggle, eloquent by thought,
The mind shall dart its deeper meanings thence;
Or pure devotion's wrapt intensity
Look through their upward light.
How soft the touch
Of thy dark silky hair! May vanity,
That feasts upon, and saps the fairest flowers,
Blight not thy spirit's sweet development.
But may thy heart be artless as thy smile;
Like those clear eyes thy soul be luminous;
And when, at last, upspringing to its God,
Be freed from earthly stain, and rise to Heaven
Sweet as the balmy breath of infant sleep.





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