Frances A Rowley.

Poems for the times: devoted to woman's rights, temperance, etc. online

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How different now — ^in these new^ modern times I
Girls Tiow have large heads, but very small minds.
The most of the head is the chignon so large,
She carries it well, though a troublesome charge.

In flounces she dresses, from her head to her feet,
With pannier and bustle, to make all complete.
The elaborate dress of the modern young lass, *

That she in society may decently pass.

High heels to her boots, in the center are placed.
That she may step forth with a beautiftd grace.
She must stoop, for effect, a diarm it will lend;
Of necessity now, she puts on the 6«nd,

Her hat, but a phantom, is perched on her head.
She is small at the waist, as has often be^a said;
Her care is about whatever she 'shall wear,
And "powder^' completes her complexion so fair.

Disgraced is she now, if she 's caught at her work.
Her hand must ne^er suffer, or soiled be with dirt..
She must learn to talk German or French^ at her school,
For this will accomplish this beauty to rule.

No part would she take in the business of life,

Prepared she is not to face the sad strife.

She hopes in the future to find a gay man,

That has means to support her in style that is grand.

No labor is given ioit this one to do,

Prepared for great labors she is n^t, that 's true.

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JJow'and Then. 89

She is fixing to tncwry, as that is the end —
The height of her wishes it always has been.

What a dull, aimless life a person must lead
Who imagines that style is all that she needs ;
Who spends all her time in fixing for ^^ beaux/'
Very little of Jife^s aims such person knows.

The difference is plain — ^the distance we scan
From our present times, and our ancestor's plans,
Educated are we, to a certain degree,
But not in tiiose branches that (hey used to be.

Take those times and cull their many pursuits —
Take those that will make woman noble — astute;
Have our girls take cottditions of ifuyw and of then^
And prepare here to live independent of men.

Let us throw off those notions that serve to degrade,
And act well the part which for us was made.
Let us teach all our daughters themselves to sustain,
Nor fear if we know they must single remain.

Prepare for the contest. In future we '11 find
That woman must have greater scope for the mind.
She must seek, in new avenues, labors in life
Ere she be prepared for any man's wife.

Let that soul that is ftiU of that great power divine
Rise quick from its lethargy — seek soon to find
The mission intended ; that it may expand
And become a true light wherever it stands.

Let us wom^i go on — take experience past — .

Apply to the present that part that will kst;

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70 (Poems for the Times,

Improve all our powers, then truly we '11 blend
The past and the present — see good now as <Aen.

iN childhood, my steps by thy hand
Were led in the pathway of right;
Thou taught'st me ever to stand

Up firm in my own strength and might*
A fiither and mother, both these hast thou been,
To lead my soul upward, and keep me from sin.

Bereft of my dear mother's love,

While in childhood's most sensitive time,

Your council hath led me above
The pathway of dark, gloomy crime.

Thy kind, noble principles ever will stand

As a bright beacon star in a desolate land.

Time, with its unfoldings I find —

My lot must with others be cast;
But the precepts instilled on my mind

Are placed there forever to last.
In whatever station through life I may fill,
The lessons thou taught'st, I treasure them still.

Thy love for thy children was deep —
From the surface could never be seen : ,

Through all my life I must keep
My heart with remembrances green.

In sickness and sorrow, the first by my side.

With broad open heart, and purse open wide.

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To my (Dear Father. 71

Consolation oft have I received

In the hour of affliction and woe;
An ear didst thou lend to my needs,

And help didst thou give me to go.
O, Father! dear father! what could I have done
When dark clouds were hiding all light of my sun.

O can I e'er thank thee enough

For kindness and love thus bestowed,

When I was thus facing rebuff

From mortals, through life's stormy road?

No, never! I ne'er can my father forget;

may I in kindness remember him yet!

As thy steps are now numbering fast.
And soon, then, thy form must lie down,

May'st thou receive honors at last —
May laurels be placed for thy crown.

Good deeds to the needy so often thou'st done.

Will beam forth as bright as the warm, shining sun.

1 love thee, dear fether, so kind —
A pleasure to me has it been

To meet thee, and glean from thy mind

Great truths thou hast stored there within.
A pleasure 'twould be to help thee, in need.
And all of thy wants and thy sorrows to heed.

Time passes so rapidly now.

Soon thou wilt be taking thy leave;
To the ^^grim monster," Death, must thou bow—

The thought fills my heart deep with grief;
Then motherless, fatherless, I may remain.
Never to hear thy good council again.

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72 (Poems for the Times.

But over that river so dark,

May we all unite in that love
Which of the divine is a part,

Bestowed by our Father above :
And join with the angels in that blessed abode >
Secure from all wrath, and free from lifers load.

|LONE here ! friendless and alone,
With no dear place I can call home.
No word of sympathy for me —
No heart to beat with friendship free-
No one that I can fcwidly trust.
Dying alone! and die I must.
No hand to dose my eyes in death.
Or see me draw my parting breath.
No sister's si^ — no mother's tear-
No friends to stand beside my bier.
All — all is gloom before me now,
But I must in submission bow;
For God is just, I always hear,
His punishment is so severe.
Why could I not have been a man?
They would not thus my conduct scan.
I should not, f Aen, thus lack for friends.
No matter what my deeds had been.
But there 's the curse — ^I see it plain.
That caused me sorrow, grief, and pain,
Bedause a woman I must be, .. . •

And iall this woe is heaped oh me.

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The (Dying Outcast. 73

Where is that man that stole from me

My name* My aU that made me free ;

That placed that mark upon my brow.

And has forever left me now.

He is a business man^ I know^

Perhaps he nmst neglect me so^

He can H forget his vows to me,

O^ no ! O^ no ! that can not be.

He '11 come to me — Hark ! do n't I hear

A footstep falling on my ear ?

It must be him. Ah no! 'tis gone.

And I must linger on alone.

O, sister, would that I could tell

Thee all the woe on me befell.

that I could my heart unfold
To every woman, young or old.
Perhs^ my story, told with care,
Might teach all oth^s to beware
Of that vile monster they call man^
That will work ruin where he can.
O, God! I 'm dying ! let me see
Some mortal being cares for me.

O, must I die alone? O, say

1 have one friend with me to pray.
No— all alone— I 'm passing on—
I feel my breath is nearly gone.

O, for one drop to quench my thirst!
01 O! my heart will surely burst.
'T is almost o'er. I wish he 'd oome.
Father — mother — still no one !
One drop of water on my tongue:
O, can I not just luwe Init onjef

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74 (Boents for The Times.

'T is growing dark. I am going now,

I feel the death-damp on my brow.

O, let me see if I can pray !

O, let me speak I "What shall I say :

Father, forgive what I have done ;

Give me a passport through Thy Son.

O, help me firom temptation clear.

And evil, too, that^s ever near.

O, give me grace to die alone.

Amen — amen ! I^m gone^ — ^I'nt gone !

IE screen is placed before all here.
No matter where they stand?
^ All nature seems to shine out clear,
So noble and so grand.

The day may dawn bright from the east,

Ere half its course is run.
Flitting before the sky of peace

Dark shadows often come.

No realm so beautiful or grand

Can boast of glory here,
But darkened shadows often stand,

Sometimes to chide severe.

No cot, though humble, or tho' poor.

But hath a cheery light;
No. glen or parish, heath or moor,

But hath its day and night*

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. Shadows. 76

No cheery home^ however bright,

Bat, look behind the door,
You '11 find a shadow, dark as night.

Oast there upon the floor.

No heart, however light and free,

But may, at future time.
Have shadows of adversity

Cast o'er that cheerful mind.

In truth, a skeleton is hid

Beneath each human heart.
No power is given here, to bid

It ever to depart.

Each one, in life, that walks or runs,

Must cast a shadow down.
As he or she in contact comes

With rays of light thrown 'round.

Beflection brings the rays of light

In raport with that form ;
The shadows contrast with the bright,

And throws its shade thereon.

No shadow can there e'er be made

Without these rays of light;
Through joy, we often are repaid

For passing through dark night.

Life is made up of light and shade —

Of joy and sorrow here;
The child of earth must often wade

Through grief sometimes severe.

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t9 (Poems for the Times.

We learn this lesBK^i in Una li&^
From shadows cast around :

That we must &oe a world of strife
That happiness be found.

Besigned, O let us all be here,
Nor wish to change our lot;

Nor think our trials most severe—
That others* woe^ hath not.

No— we all have our sunshine here—
All have our shadows too;

Preparing us for other spheres
Just out beyond our view.

I TOUCH my pen with living fire!
' Do thou now here my thoughts inspire 1
"While I shall sing of one, now gone,
That lived to bless the sorrowing cme.

Can I show forth to mortals here
The real worth of one so dear?
Can I, to you, in truth impart
What dwelt within that noble heart ?

The task is hard — it can 't be done ;
Nor take his virtues, one by one.
And give to mortals here below.
His greatness can we ever show.

His virtues reach beyond all time-^
ThsUi great, benevolent, good mind, —

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Ode to Charles (Dickens. 77

No mortal can with pen, e^er tell
What power within that form did dwell.

The weak — the helpless ones, he gave
True words of comfort. Helped to save
The oppressed — ^the feeble — from those ills
That all our social circles fill.

He never sought for ease in life.
But ever ready for the strife.
He girded armor for the fight,
And always battled for the right.

All o'er our earth his name will sound —
And, as each year may roll around,
True wisdom we may always see
Flowing along, in streams so free.

He 's gone, in form — in spirit, near :

He left his works behind him, here :

In future, let us sing the song :

" Charles Dickens lives, and battles wrong.''

His works stand out, now, one by oae—
Not finished — no— but just begun ;
The last on earth in form, he gave.
And labored with true courage brave.

His latest task half done, we see^
Ere God, his Fathar^ set him free;
Begun on earth — ^preparing, here.
To finish in another sphere.

Labor did he, while dwelling here —
Laboring, he went to other spheres :

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78 . (Poems for the Times,

With pen in hand, beside the river,
He crossed — and stood in the forever.

England has lost a noble son :
His noble name will long be sung
By those — his kinsmen— o'er the sea,
From time to all eternity.

We look, and surely we behold
True courage in this man so bold :
Much good can we accomplish h^re,
If we will let our light shine clear.

Example given in him, we scan —
This laboring, energetic man —
A pattern of nobility,
Charles Dickens, we behold in thee.

[E golden orb of day is seen
Approaching from the east,
' This beautifbl, majestic queen
Gives forth her great behest.

" I come," she says, " to herald forth
To mortals on your sphere.

That golden mom follows my course :
O, mortals, dost thou hear?''

Ere long the sun in grandeur comes.

And shines as in a blaze.
Its rays are darted one by one.

As round the earth it plays. *

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Midsummer (Day. 79

Midsummer I O^ to bear the heat

Of a bright, golden day!
Insects around your head retreat

In their accustomed way.

O, give me some secluded spot,

Within some shady nook —
Some place to shun those beams so hot

That blind me as I look !

Ah I I have found the wished retreat —

Beneath the old oak tree,
Where gentle zephyrs round my seat

Are whispering so free I

With &n in hand, I sit me down —

(I brush the flies away) —
I^m comfortable upon the ground.

For onccy this summer day.

Ere long I feel around my form

The " sweet restorer,'^ Sleep,
Hath come to comfort one so warm.

To bring me rest so sweet !

Enclosed within his sweet embrace.

From outward sorrows free,
I dream my soul goes out to trace

In lands of mystery.

A form before me stood erect,

Upon his brow I saw
Written, '^ Behold upon this crest

The coronet of war V^

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80 (Poems for the Times,

There I beheld the jewels bright

That told the story well ;
Of many a fierce and bloody fight

Each one could plainly tell.

Each told of some great battle deed^
Some passkm there subdued,

Which caused his heart to fight and bleed,
But there it ^sdnly stood I

There diamcmds, rubies, <^ls came^

In great or less ^gree,
As anger, vengeance, oven^ame

And set that bound soal free.

The vpf^t^ were all controlled^

All governed for his good ;
There came the jewels forth that told

And prominen^- stood.

There I behekl bef<»re my sight,

So nobl^ great, and grand,
A perfect and a living type

Was shown me in this man.

I lo<^ed, asid t&«re was shining forth
Bright stars from off that crown ;

I saw thehr meaning, noble wcnrth
Was always shining down.

Good deeds eS love to fiJlen man
Came forth in blazing light.

And on ^at brow traces I M sean
That told of many a fight.

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Midsummer (Day. 81

Each, every action of his life

Stood forth i» bold relief,
Placed there to show how fierce the strife

With BUHrtal pain and griefl

'' Enough," I said, « I ^11 battle oa

Through this ev^itfdl life ;
Whatever I can, I '11 do, in form.

Nor care how hard the fight.'*^

1 11 strive my passions to coiUarol,

My appetite subdue;
And tiiius will I prepare my soul

To render what i» true*

Then will I work for good while hcap^

Nor care for grief or pain ;
In ft^re will I know and heao*

I Ve labored not in vain^

The vision passed, and I awoke ;

The sun was pouring down,
And still beneath that shady oak

I sat upon the ground.

Great beads of perspiraticm stood

All o'er my hands and &ce ;
The heat oppressed, it seemed my blood

Had boiled while in l^at place.

I rose, and wiped fr<mi off my brow

The moisture all away :
The beat ! I almost feel it now

As <m that snnxmer da^ !

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82 fPoents for the Times.

But here have I a lesson learned,

To bear with fortitude
Whatever may come to me in turn.

What (}od has giv«i for good.

If sommer's heat or winter's snow,

It matters not to me ;
'Tis for oar good, oar Father knows,

His love to as we see.

I '11 govern all my passions here.

Impatience I'll restrain;
I '11 stand the test while on this spherer-

While dwelling on this plain.

Then will I see the good in all.
And live to work for good.

And try to heed my brother's call,
As every mortal shoald.

[ME will unfold to all complete,
As we are passing, day by day.
Each in our own accustomed way,^
That for each bitter there's a sweet.

Crosses in Ufe we all must meet,
Which makes us firm, imd true, and strong.
And teaches us the right and wrong.
And for each bitter Imngs a sweet.

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Every (Bitter hath its Sweet. 8S

Affliction oomes — we can't retreat;
We never can consider why
We all mnst soffer here^ and die:
We think oar bitter hath no sweet

But time rolls on, we climb the steep ;
There we behold with wandering eye,
Why we are called thus low to lie :
We find our bitter hath its sweets

Immortal li& — joyous^ replete
With bliss beyond the lower vale;
We look, and lo! this sight we hail:
Here for our bitter there's a sweet.

While wandering here, the eye oft greets
The flowers, so beautiful, sublime;
Partaking fragrance, soon we find,
Alas! a bitter in the sweet.

For often does the vision greet
Flowers that are beautiftil to view.
Obnoxious fragrance hath imbued ;
There find the bitter with the sweet.

In every thing in life we meet.
All hath, we find, its counterpart
Which causes sorrow, pain or smart;
But yet this bitter hath its sweet.

The good and wise may take a seat
Beside the low and vulgar ones ;
Both in the rape of life must run —
One is the bitter, one the sweet.

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M (P^oems for the Times.

In every bdng Qod completes^
That dwells upon tiiis earthly plane^
Dwell both the good and bad the same;
Below the bitter is tiie sweet..

Dig down with loye's br^bt wea|K)n^ deep
In erevy heart, though low ^tis sunk;
Of vice it may have often dntnk^
Yet ^neath its bitter tiiere ^s. a sweets

In Nature's woi^, and art oompiete.
We find these opposites both there;
And if we study well, with care,.
We '11 enll the bittar &(»n the sweet.

Our toils in life bring lessons deep,
And cause us all to upward look,
And learn from life's immortal book,^
To draw from bitter all the sweetw

Then let us take this life, replete
With joy and s(Mtow, charms and cares;
With others let us take our i^ares,
And 'neath its bitter find its sweet.

f 09K ll ^9iXiU

lERE 'S the love of the beandful, love of the feir,
That over our earth is seen ;
^ The love of the songsters in the air,
The love of the beautiful stream.

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Love of Jfature. 86

The love of the forest, the love of the plain.

Love of a cottage rare,
The love of the moon in its wax and wane,

The love of the flowers so feir.

The love of the cataract's mighty sweep,

Down deep in its bed below.
The love of the mountain's towering steep.

The love of the vall^ below.

The love of a dog, in hia trusty way.

The love of the meadows green,
The love of the lambs, that frisk and play.

And the love of our dress is seen.

But there is a higher and holier love.

That mortals should possess.
That leads them higher and higher above.

To the realms of perfect rest.

'Tis the love of Oodj in the human soul.

New life and light will impart.
Of all other love, this covers the whole.

It happy makes the heart.

This love will lead us on in life.

To deeds of kindness here,
And cheer us on through battle and strife.

And make our pathway clear.

We need riot love less of the beautiful here>

But more and more we will find
That nature, so beautifiil, shines out clear.

And more beautiful to our mind.

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86 ^oems for the Times.

Then let us love all we possess on earth —

Our brother and sister too ;
In all that we see, we'll study their worth,

And show that our love is true.

We see our great Father, in all he has made —

In the glorious sun and stars ;
The earth, we see, by his hand is stayed —

The planets all, Saturn and Mars.

The worlds on worlds that daily run

Their course through the shining heavens ;

The milky-way, in the heavens is hung,
And Pleiads-stars of seven.

O, glorious Father, we feel, as we look
At thy work, in heaven and on earth,

That we love to read from Nature's book,
And know and see thy worth.

O, help us to study, with all our might

To learn all we can from thee ;
To do whatever to us seemeth right,

And love whatever we see.

wandered by the garden wall.
We gathered flowers together.
And listened to the thrush's call ;
('T was bright and sunny weather.)

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.' Two (Pair of Eyes, 87

My eyes were black and her's were blue,

We thought much of each other :
Her heart was young, and trusting too ;

We loved as sister, brother.

Children were we in early life.
Our hearts were young and tender.

Neither thought e'er of future strife —
Of what we both must render.

But happy childr^i were we two.
Naught could our hearts e'er sunder :

My eyes were black and her's were blue
As the skies that we played under.

I was tiie eldest. She was fidr.

As fairy clouds at summer,
Floating along through balmy air,

More than our eyes could number.

O, those were happy moments then !

I think of them with pleasure —
When she and I played on the glen.

And counted o'er our treasures.

Long years have passed since that bright time

When we played there together ;
We both had fiiced the piercing wind

Of lifers cold, stormy weather.

My eyes, so black, and wondrous clear :

(And must I tell the story)
"Have many times, with drink been bleared.

My iace has oft been gory.

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d^oems for the Times.

Those bright, yet meltiag eyes of blue.
Have sunken groFwn, by weeping.

I loved her, yet (I speak what 's true)
I Ve sowed tares for her lei^ing.

I think : O, could I now recall
The past I as I Ve been thinking,

Of sin and sorrow that be&ll
The victims of hard drinkmg*

O, could I speak in thunder tones
To those that eanse this sorrow!

And ccmid the sound all o'er be blown,
With blasts that tell the horrcur

Of wretchedness, and woe, and erime^
Of rows that come to fighting;

Of tortures^-death from time to time;
Of future prospect blighting.

And mudi — ^yea, every evil thing
We have, within our nation.

That 's caused by this terrific thing :
This plague, this great potation.

If by one sound, and that the la^

That I should ever utter,
*T would stop this pestilence, tMs blast,

And lift men from the gutter.

VA do it quick, and then lie down.
And take my fiinal exit

To heaven, above — ^to where I 'm bound-
Say : take my li£9^ aco^t it.

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The M other 'in^Law. gg

But no^ I can 't recall the past^

I must think all this over :
Those eyes^ that once on me were cast^

Now lie beneath the clover.

She stood as firm and true to me^
Through lifers dark, stormy weather ;

But, being frail, was soon set free.
Thus gone to the forever.

Thank Gk)d! I'm now a sob^ man^

And mean to stand so ever ;
And in the bright and heavenly land

O, may we ne'er be severed !

O, may those ejes of shining blue

On me once more be smiling ;
And may these black ones look up true,

With naught their light defiling.

May she forgive me for the past,

My love bind us together ;
O, may my lot with her's be cast,

And may no power e'er sever.

[THIN that circle ccnnes

A young and tender flower,
^Hereafier to beoom^

Of this^ Ay house a dower.

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90 (Poems for the Tim^s.

The choeoi of that son^
She giv^ to him her all;

The two become as one,
Hia wife she is installed.

How do you here receive

This tender being now?
Into her ear you breathe

Words that will make her bow
Her head with grief and pain:

Her heart sinks deep, deep down-
It seems that ne'er again

Will joys for her be found.

This plant, so sensitive,

Feels keenly all you say;
She feels she ne'er can live

In this unhappy way.
Complaint after complaint

Is poured into the ear
Of her dear husband, 'gainst

This wife, to him so dear.

She bears, with fortitude.

All that she hears from him ;
And shows you gratitude.

And trys your love to win.
But still you can not see

In this poor child of earth.
That 's dwelling now with thee.

Naught that 's of any wOTth.

She lives here for a time —
Has children — ^forthem cares:

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The M other "in^Law. 91

Perplexed and crushed in mind,

Surrounded here by snares.
Her husband now oomplains —

She feels dejected — ^low ;
She ne'er expects again

Enjoyment here below.

With children young and small

She 's left in this cold world,
To care for these — ^her all —

And hear what 's at her hurled.
Her husbimd passes on,

And she is left to mourn;
Death snatches up that form —

He goes to his last bourne.

Do you draw near to her —

Those little ones — apart
Of your own life, as 'twere,

A place find in your heart?
Or do you turn with words

To crush, and keep them down?
Have they not oft;en heard

Harsh words, and seen a frown?

Did you encourage her —

Left here to fill the place
Of &ther and mother —

A frowning world to fiice?
Ah, no ! discouragement

In every step she finds;
It seems that some one meant

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Online LibraryFrances A RowleyPoems for the times: devoted to woman's rights, temperance, etc. → online text (page 4 of 14)