by George Moses Horton
Friendship, thou balm for ev'ry ill,
I must aspire to thee;
Whose breezes bid the heart be still,
And render sweet the patient's pill,
And set the pris'ner free.
Friendship, it is the softest soul
Which feels another's pain;
And must with equal sighs condole,
While sympathetic streamlets roll,
Which nothing can restrain.
Not to be nominated smart,
Of mortals to be seen,
She does not thus her gifts impart,
Her aid is from a feeling heart,
A principle within.
When the lone stranger, forced to roam,
Comes shiv'ring to her door,
At once he finds a welcome home,
The torch of grace dispels his gloom,
And bids him grope no more.
Friendship was never known to fail
The voice of need to hear,
When ruthless ills our peace assail,
When from our hearts she draws the veil,
And drys the falling tear.
When dogs and devils snarl and fight,
She hides and dwells alone;
When friends and kindred disunite,
With pity she surveys the right,
And gives to each his own.
Friendship has not a sister grace
Her wonders to exceed;
She is the queen of all her race,
Whose charms the stoutest must embrace
When in the vale of need.
Friendship is but the feeling sigh,
The sympathizing tear,
Constrain'd to flow till others dry,
Nor lets the needy soul pass by,
Nor scorns to see or hear.
Last updated March 11, 2023