James Willis Brown 1840 - 1920
Enroute to an Army Camp
July 20, 1866
I love to sing when I am glad
Song is the echo of my gladness
I love to sing when I am sad
Till song makes sweet my very sadness
Tis pleasant when sweet voices I enjoy
To some sweet rhyme in concert only
And Christ to me is company
Good company when I am sad and lonely!
Beneath a stone in sweet repose
Is laid a mother’s pride
A flower that scarce had waked
to life and beauty ere it died
God in his wisdom has recalled
the precious born, his love had given,
and tho the casket molders there
The gem is sparkling now in heaven!
My Mother, when I learned that thou was dead,
Wast thou conscious of the tears I shed?
Honored thy spirit over thy sorrowing son?
A wretch even then, Life’s journey just begun.
Perhaps thou gavest me though unfelt a kiss?
Perhaps a tear?
If souls can weep in bliss
Ah, that maternal smile It answers, Yes!
Oh thou whose mercy guides my way,
Though now it seems severe
Forbid my unbelief to say
There is no mercy here.
Oh grant me to desire the pain
That comes in kindness done
More than the world’s alluring gain!
Succeeded by a Frown
I’ll love thee, tho’ the bloom
that is on thy cheeks is gone
as thy beauty away
I have built my love on thy virtues meek
And my love with my life shall only decay.