Caroline Bowles Southey

1786-1854

 

It Is Not Death

by Caroline Bowles Southey

It is not Death -- it is not Death,
From which I shrink with coward fear;
It is that I must leave behind
All I love here.

It is not Wealth -- it is not Wealth,
That I am loath to leave behind;
Small store to me (yet all I crave)
Hath fate assigned.

It is not Fame -- it is not Fame,
From which it will be pain to part;
Obscure my lot; but mine was still
An humble heart.

It is not Health -- it is not Health,
That makes me fain to linger here
For I have languished on in pain
This many a year.

It is not Hope -- it is not Hope,
From which I cannot turn away;
O, earthy Hope has cheated me
This many a day!

But there are Friends -- but there are Friends,
To whom I could not say Farewell,
Without a pang more hard to bear
Than tongue can telL

But there's a thought -- but there's a thought
Will arm me with that pang to cope;
Thank God! we shall not part like those
Who have no hope.

And some are gone -- and some are gone --
Methinks they chide my long delay --
With whom, it seemed, my very life
Went half away.

But we shall meet -- but we shall meet --
Where parting tears shall never flow;
And, when I think thereon, almost
I long to go.

The Savior wept -- the Savior wept
O'er him he loved -- corrupting clay!
But then He spake the word, and Death
Gave up his prey!

A little while -- a little while --
And the dark Grave shall yield its trust;
Yea, render every atom up
Of human dust.

What matters then -- what matters then --
Who earliest lays him down to rest?
Nay, to depart, and be with Christ,
Is surely best.

Source:

The Floral Wreath Of Autumn Flowers
Copyright 1850
Detroit: Kerr, Doughty and Lapham
 
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