On a picture of my father

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On a picture of my father by Anne Lynch Botta
from Poems (1848)

       I strive in vain those features to restore
            To Memory's faded tablets, which on me,
            From the mute ivory, beam so lovingly,
        And to recall their living light once more.
            In vain I strive to pierce that veil of years,
            And turn away all blinded with my tears.
        But sometimes when the garish day is passed,
        And night and sleep their spell upon me cast,
        Thou comest to me, my father, from above,
            And then for that brief moment I am blest,
            For I am folded to thy sheltering breast;
        And in the sacred rapture of thy love
        A holy spell is on my spirit laid:
        This mighty hunger of my heart is stayed.

This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.