ANNIE, my first-born, gentle child,
My tender, fragile flower;
Why twines thy image round my heart,
With such mysterious power?
Is it because thy infant wail
The icy barrier moved,
That bound my soul's affections fast?
I knew 'twas mine I loved.
A mother's love no tongue can tell--
How boundless is that sea!
'Twas never mine; her spirit fled,
As she gave birth to me.
Annie, I gave to thee, my child,
The love my heart could yield;
God grant its influence o'er thee cast
From all life's ills a shield.