Verses Occasioned by the Death of a Child of the Measles [poem by Charles Harpur, 12 May 1835]

[Editor: A poem by Charles Harpur.]

Verses Occasioned by the Death of a Child of the Measles.

And art thou gone ? so early gone ?
But yesterday and thou wer’t fresh,
As is the breeze the mountains on,
Or verdure by the fountain’s gush;
A day is past and thou art found,
A fragment of the burial ground.

Say, for what purpose cam’st thou here,
To what did tend thy short-lived bloom,
Were’t but to exact from love the tear,
And swell the trophies of the tomb ;
Or like a tint of closing day,
A gawde to smile itself away ?

Perchance Heaven look’d and saw thy trace
Of destiny ; to prove to go
’Mid the black waters of disgrace,
Or thorney wilderness of woe ;
Then pitying snatch’d thee to the skies,

At least thou’st found in death’s repose,
A shelter from the future storm ;
The hands which crush the op’ning rose,
Destroy as well the ’gend’ring worm ;
And give it triumph o’er the night,
Of strengthening heat and gathering blight.

C. Harpur.

The Australian (Sydney, NSW), Tuesday 12 May 1835, page 4

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