Scripture Verse

Children are a blessing and a gift from the Lord. Psalm 127:3

Introduction

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Emily C. Judson (1817–1854)

Words: Emi­ly C. Jud­son, Jan­ua­ry 1848. She wrote these vers­es af­ter the birth of her daugh­ter, Emi­ly Fran­ces, at Maul­main, Bur­ma (now Maw­lam­yi­ne, My­an­mar), De­cem­ber 24, 1847. They ap­peared in her Olio of Do­mes­tic Vers­es, 1852, pag­es 157–58.

Music: Wood­worth Will­iam B. Brad­bu­ry, Men­dels­sohn Col­lect­ion, or Third Book of Psal­mo­dy (New York, 1849) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tune:

  • Adieu (Harp) ano­ny­mous, in The Spi­ri­tu­al Harp, ed­it­ed by James M. Pee­bles, Jo­seph O. Bar­rett & Eb­en H. Bai­ley (Bos­ton Mas­sa­chu­setts: Will­iam White, 1868), num­ber 54 (🔊 pdf nwc) (us­es an ev­en num­ber of vers­es)
portrait
William B. Bradbury (1816–1868)

Lyrics

Ere last year’s moon had left the sky,
A bird­ling sought my In­di­an nest,
And fold­ed, O, so lov­ing­ly!
Her ti­ny wings up­on my breast.

From morn till ev­en­ing’s purple tinge,
In win­some help­less­ness she lies,
Two rose-leaves, with a silk­en fringe,
Shut soft­ly on her sta­rry eyes.

There’s not in Ind a love­li­er bird—
Broad earth owns not a hap­pi­er nest—
O God! Thou hast a foun­tain stirred,
Whose wa­ters ne­ver­more shall rest!

This beau­ti­ful, mys­te­ri­ous thing,
This seem­ing vi­si­tant from Hea­ven
This bird, with the im­mor­tal wing,
To me—to me, Thy hand has giv­en.

The pulse first caught its ti­ny stroke,
The blood, its crim­son hue from mine—
This life, which I have dared in­voke,
Henceforth is pa­ral­lel with Thine.

A si­lent awe is in my room,
I trem­ble with de­li­cious fear;
The fu­ture, with its light and gloom,
Time and eter­ni­ty, is here.

Doubts—hopes, in ea­ger tu­mult, rise—
Hear, O my God! one ear­nest pray­er!
Room for my bird in pa­ra­dise,
And give her an­gel plum­age there.