To a Star
Fair star, thy peaceful beams descend
Like blessings from above,
My heart, that Care’s rude scourgings rend,
With tender glances soon to mend,
And overflow with love.
A message true, O star, is thine,
The list’ning earth to tell;
And God has trimmed thy lamp divine,
And hangs it in the heav’ns to shine,
That all may learn it well.
’Tis this — that ever should we lend
Our light, though dim it be;
Large fires from smaller flames extend,
And on the kindling does depend
The torch whereby all see.
So let me, then, thy lesson learn,
Sweet star of light and love;
And though my beams but dimly burn,
May modesty and kindness earn
That meed all praise above.
William Blocksidge, Songs o’ the South, London: Watts, 1908, p. 13
heav’n = (vernacular) heaven
list’ning = (archaic) listening
meed = a fitting recompense
rend = to tear or break in a violent manner
rude = primitive, raw, or rough, or in an unfinished state or natural condition (distinct from the modern usage of “rude” as someone being discourteous or ill-mannered)
thine = (archaic) your; yours
thy = (archaic) your
’tis = (archaic) a contraction of “it is”