On our Thirty-ninth Wedding-day, 6th of May, 1810

Original Text: 
The Loyal Verses of Joseph Stansbury and Doctor Jonathan Odell, ed. Winthrop Sargent (Albany: J. Munsell, 1860): 111-12. Internet Archive.
1Twice nineteen years, dear Nancy, on this day
2Complete their circle, since the smiling May
3Beheld us at the altar kneel and join
4In holy rites and vows, which made thee mine.
5Then, like the reddening East without a cloud,
6Bright was my dawn of joy. To Heaven I bowed
7In thankful exultation, well assured
8That all my heart could covet was secured.
9But ah, how soon this dawn of Joy so bright
10Was followed by a dark and stormy night!
11The howling tempest, in a fatal hour,
12Drove me, an exile from our nuptial bower,
13To seek for refuge in the tented field,
14Till democratic Tyranny should yield.
15Thus torn asunder we, from year to year,
16Endured the alternate strife of Hope and Fear;
17Till, from Suspense delivered by Defeat,
19Here, join'd by thee and thy young playful train,
20I was o'erpaid for years of toil and pain.
21We had renounced our native hostile shore;
22And met, I trust, till death to part no more!
23But fast approaching now the verge of life,
24With what emotions do I see a Wife
25And Children, smiling with affection dear,
26And think--how sure that parting, and how near!
27The solemn thought I wish not to restrain:
28Tho' painful, 'tis a salutary pain.
29Then let this verse in your remembrance live,
30That, when from life released, I still may give
31A token of my love; may whisper still
32Some fault to shun, some duty to fulfill;
33May prompt your Sympathy, some pain to share;
34Or warn you of some pleasures to beware;
35Remind you that the Arrow's silent flight,
36Unseen alike at noon or dead of night,
37Should cause no perturbation or dismay,
38But teach you to enjoy the passing day
39With dutiful tranquillity of mind!
40Active and vigilant, but still resign'd.
41For our Redeemer liveth, and we know,
42How or whenever parted here below,
43His faithful servants, in the Realm above,
44Shall meet again as heirs of his eternal love.

Notes

18] Written in Frederiction, New Brunswick. Back to Line
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
2011