I love it, I love it; and who shall dare
To chide me for loving that old arm-chair?
I’ve treasured it long as a sainted prize,
I’ve bedew’d it with tears, and embalmed it with sighs;
’Tis bound by a thousand bands to my heart;
Not a tie will break, not a link will start.
Would ye learn the spell? a mother sat there,
And a sacred thing is that old arm-chair.
In childhood’s hour I linger’d near
The hallow’d seat with list’ning ear;
And gentle words that mother would give,
To fit me to die and teach me to live.
She told me shame would never betide,
With truth for my creed and God for my guide;
She taught me to lisp my earliest prayer,
As I knelt beside that old arm-chair.
I sat and watch’d her many a day,
When her eye grew dim, and her locks were grey;
And I almost worshipp’d her when she smil’d
And turn’d from her Bible to bless her child.
Years roll’d on, but the last one sped—
My idol was shatter’d, my earth-star fled;
I learnt how much the heart can bear,
When I saw her die in that old arm-chair.
’Tis past! ’tis past! but I gaze on it now
With quivering breath and throbbing brow:
’Twas there she nursed me, ’twas there she died;
And memory flows with lava tide.
Say it is folly, and deem me weak,
While the scalding drops start down my cheek;
But I love it, I love it, and cannot tear
My soul from a mother’s old arm-chair.
Song for the New Year
Old Time has turned another page Of eternity and truth; He reads with a warning voice to age, And whispers a lesson to youth. A year has fled o’er heart and head Since last the yule log burnt; And we have a task to closely ask, What the bosom and brain have learnt? Oh! let us hope that our sands have run With wisdom’s precious grains; Oh! may we find that our hands have done Some work of glorious pains. Then a welcome and cheer to the merry new year, While the holly gleams above us; With a pardon for the foes who hate, And a prayer for those who love us. We may have seen some loved ones pass To the land of hallow’d rest; We may miss the flow of an honest brow And the warmth of a friendly breast: But if we nursed them while on earth, With hearts all true and kind, Will their spirits blame the sinless mirth Of those true hearts left behind? No, no! it were not well or wise To mourn with endless pain; There’s a better world beyond the skies, Where the good shall meet again. Then a welcome and cheer to the merry new year. While the holly gleams above us; With a pardon for the foes who hate, And a prayer for those who love us. Have our days rolled on serenely free From sorrow’s dim alloy? Do we still possess the gifts that bless And fill our souls with joy? Are the creatures dear still clinging near? Do we hear loved voices come? Do we gaze on eyes whose glances shed A halo round our home? Oh, if we do, let thanks be pour’d To Him who hath spared and given, And forget not o’er the festive board The mercies held from heaven. Then a welcome and cheer to the merry new year, While the holly gleams above us; With a pardon for the foes who hate, And a prayer for those who love us.