by Ada Cambridge
O time, great Healer! canst thou still
The crying hearts that feel the knife?
O great Restorer, canst thou fill
The wide gaps broken out of life
By love and duty's bitter strife?
O Friend, and canst thou, as they say,
Soothe all our troubles on thy breast,
Till, calm in death, they pass away,
And, one by one, are laid to rest
In unknown graves, beyond our quest?
Nay, there's a wound thou canst not ease;
Nay, there's a sickness past thine art.
Ah me! while I'm beyond the seas,
There'll be a sore place in my heart
That, at a touch, will throb and smart.
Nay, nay, with all thy skill-with all
The care and cunning thou mayst spend,
Thou canst but weakly patch the wall
That wrench of parting came to rend,
That gap no mason's hand can mend.
And as for buried sorrows-one
Hears every sound above its head;
Joys and prosperities may run
With happy footsteps o'er the dead,-
This grief of absence feels the tread.
O Time, thy graveyard is a street-
Thy graves no sculptured records crown;
Yet this one, trod of many feet,
Still shows the heap'd earth, fresh and brown,-
No foot of joy can press it down.
There velvet mosses soon will creep,
And grey and golden lichens grow;
There sweet white snowdrops soon will peep,
And purple violets bud and blow,
From winter's bosom, cloak'd in snow;
There summer lights and shades will fall,
And soft rains patter through the trees;
There slender grasses, frail and tall,
Will weave and whisper in the breeze-
'Twill be a grave in spite of these.
Last updated January 14, 2019