To a Charitable Lady Friend
Sweet flower of womanhood, dear kindly soul,
How sad are words that rightly would convey
A semblance of the charms that round thee stay,
And all thy life with deeds of love control!
Some flowers but lend the sun their love; the whole
Of thine thou deemest but a common prey,
And truly dost thou scorn each dull delay
That stays the meed of Charity’s fair dole.
In thee (the elements so well unite)
A temperament of perfect parts doth form
A shield that fatal proves to Rancour’s storm.
Thy prayers and all thine alms may That requite
Whose boundless Law doth fill the Infinite,
And thy pure heart with holy flame so warm!
William Blocksidge, Songs o’ the South, London: Watts, 1908, p. 53
deemest = (archaic) deem
dost = (archaic) do
doth = (archaic) does
meed = a fitting recompense
thee = (archaic) you
thine = (archaic) your; yours
thou = (archaic) you
thy = (archaic) your