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Janet Hamilton

Farewell To The Old Year, 1863

Farewell, old year, 'the bourne' is near,
'Whence traveller ne'er returneth'-
Passing away from time for aye,
Thy life-light faintly burneth.


Farewell, old year, dark shapes of fear,
Grim spectres pale and gory,
Flitting around, with moaning sound,
Tell us thy sad war story.


Farewell, old year, we do not fear
Republic or Imperial-
If war inclined, they both shall find
We're rather tough material.


Farewell, old year, thy past career
Hath given both gloom and gladness;

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America

'Peace, peace, O peace!' sweet peace, descend,
The cloud of war asunder rend;
Thy gentle reign alone restores
Rest to Columbia's ravaged shores!


Peace, peace! Shall still your brother's blood
Cry from the ground-'the purple flood
Is swelling high, soon to o'erflow
In tides of ruin, shame, and woe?'


Peace, peace! We know your ends and aims,
Your wild, ambitious, monstrous claims;
The States shall reign, the globe a throne,
Your sceptre sway the world alone!


Peace, peace! Wild dreamers, what are ye?
A people now or yet to be?

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October Musings, 1866

Silent, grave, subdued, and sober,
Month beloved, my own October!
Resting in thy peaceful arms,
Seeing not, I feel thy charms-
Feel upon my withered cheek
Thy gentle breath, thy whispers meek;
Tell of Autumn's latest sheaves,
Songless woods, and falling leaves-
Nature's floral wreath despoiled;
Hueless, scentless, matted, soiled,
Fall her tresses thin and gray,
Bending to October's sway.


Summer sun with thirsty beams
Drinking dry the pools and streams:
Where thy fervid glories now,
The burning splendours of thy brow?
Veiled effulgence now is thine,
Tender radiance, half divine;

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Dark Hours: The Drunkard's Mother

Dark hours of tearless, sleepless grief,
Of woe, denied the soft relief
Of tears, to soothe the burning smart
That throbs and festers in my heart.
Oft has this grief my soul o'erspread,
Like funeral pall above the dead.
Ah, me! beneath the coffin-lid
Of murdered hopes for ever hid,
My promised joys of love and trust
With them lie mouldering in the dust.
Ah! not in sentimental strain
Of love-sick maid and sighing swain
I sing, who, crossed in hapless love,
The tender anguish deeply prove-
Nor that fierce grief when loss of fame,
Of wealth, of power, the baffled aim
Of worldly schemes, sends to the heart
Keen disappointment's venom'd dart.
Is such thy grief? you ask.-Ah, no!
A darker, deeper, deadlier woe

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October, 1863

Month of storm, beat shocks and sheaves,
Withered flowers, and falling leaves,
Sullen clouds that darkly loom
Like the shadows of the tomb;
Looks the sun through murky haze
With a weird and watery gaze,
Lighting up the fields and streams,
Vanishing like lightning gleams.
Brooks that sung through mead and dingle
With a silvery tinkle tingle,
Foaming, turbid, rush along
With a rudely brawling song.
Robin of the noiseless wing
And ruddy vest, begins to sing
His wintry lay, and, flitting by,
Scans me with his bold, bright eye.
Sore, October, thou hast grieved me,
Ah! thine advent hath deceived me,
For thou cam'st with thunder crashing,
Deadly lightnings round thee flashing,

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