Heard (Henderson), Josephine D.
IN childhood's sunny day my heart was taught to love
Thy name, all other poet's names above,
And when to womanhood at last I came,
Behold the spark was fanned into a flame,
Nor did I dare presume that I should live,
And to the honored, white-haired poet give
My sentiment in rude constructed rhyme;
O, wondrous change wrought by the hand of time!
When he who came the slaves among to dwell,
From frigid Idaho (we loved him well,)
Athirst for knowledge I stood at his side,
With quickening thought and eyes astonished, wide.
He nightly read, and held me on his knee,
From Whittier's "Snowbound" filling me with glee,
The seed sown by his hand in infant heart,
Has lived and grown, and cannot now depart.
Now to the sunset thou hast set thy face,
And silvery crown thy head doth grace;
The mind of fertile thought doth not decline
Preserved yet from the ravages of time
Since I can never hope my first desire,
To shake thy hand, which would my soul inspire,
Now e're yet "the cord is loosed or pitcher broken,
Grant me with thine own hand this little token:
Ere yet that hand by feebleness grows lame,
With condescension write for me they name.