To my little niece Sally Livingston, on the death of a little serenading wren she admired.
Hasty pilgrim stop thy pace
Turn a moment to this place
Read what pity hath erected
To a songster she respected.
Little minstrel all is o’er
Never will thy chirpings more
Soothe the heavy heart of care
Or dispel the darkness there.
I have known thee e’er the sun
Hath on yonder mountain shone;
E’er the sky-lark hath ascended,
Or the thrush her throat distended;
Cheerful trill thy little ditty
As the singer, blithe and pretty.
Labour stood, half bent to hear,
Study lent a list’ning ear,
Dissipation stop’d a while,
Grief was even seen to smile,
Ambition – but the gushing tear
O’erwhelms the stone and stops me here.