Here is a poem that Annie wrote to her mother, upon reflecting over her brief but eventful life. She extols her mother’s virtues and guidance as a strong stay and comfort for herself:

To My Mother

    My lot has been to roam
    Far from the cheering light of home,
    Mid scenes of commotion, turmoil and strife,
    Temptation and snares that beset this life.
Oh! yonder I see a beacon light gleaming,
O’er the dark wave its lustre is beaming,
Dear mother! as the light to the mariner lost,
So thou to the bark on the billow tossed.

    My lot has been to meet
    The bitter mixed with transient sweet;
    To struggle on, in toil and care,
    The tide of adverse fate to bear.
Oh! yonder I see a tender vine, twining
Around a tree, its tendrils are shining;
Dear mother! as the vine twines around the tree,
So from life’s rude blasts I cling to thee.

    My lot has been to feel
    Dark shadows o’er my spirit steal;
    From slanderous tongues, and envy’s wiles,
    Deceit that lurked ‘neath wreathing smiles.
Oh! yonder I see the floweret’s hue;
Reviving ‘neath the pearly dew.
Dear mother! as the dew to the drooping flower,
So thou to me in sorrow’s dark hour.

    My lot has been to learn
    Of friendship false, that bright will burn
    When fortune spreads her wing of light,
    But fades away when cometh night.
Oh! yonder I see a bright star sparkling,
While all around lies cold and darkling.
Dear mother! as the star thou art in weal or wo,
The darker the night, the brighter the glow.

    My lot has been to pore
    Learning’s classic pages o’er;
    Seeking for hidden pearls to wear,
    Fame’s golden wreath, the victors bear.
Oh! yonder I see a lone bird flying,
Seeking her nest with voice of sighing.
Dear mother! as the wearied bird her downy nest,
So seek I thee, for quiet rest.

    My lot is now to tread
    A troubled path whence light hath fled;
    But ne’er do I thy words forget,
    Or smiles of love from thee I’ve met.
I think of thee in morning’s beaming light,
In burning noon and shadowy night.
Dear mother! mid all my thoughtless wanderings wild,
Still clings to thee thy devoted child.

    Whate’er my future lot may be,
    On life’s tempestuous trackless sea,
    Oh, may I never, where’er I roam,
    Forget the cheering light of home,
That blessed light to the wanderer given,
To guide the way that leads to Heaven.
Dear mother! to thee may I cling till life is o’er,
And united above—we part nevermore.

*******
Her mother accepts the outpouring of love and affection from her daughter’s heart, but points Annie’s faith and praise to the Lord above, who is using the circumstances of her life to purify and refine her for an eternal purpose:

Response

Dear Annie:

What though thy lot has been to bear
    Much adverse fate, ‘mid toil and care,
Raised expectations crushed and dead,
    And hope’s triumphant visions fled?

Dost thou not feel a mightier power,
    A hand divine in this dark hour?
Does not thy heart begin to feel
    The claims of Him who wounds to heal?

‘Tis true, my child, misfortune’s blast
    But breaks the rock whence gems are cast;
The polished steel and marble white,
    Was once as rough and dark as night.

As purest gold and clearest glass
    Must through the hottest furnace pass,
So oft repeated strokes are given,
    To form and fit a soul for Heaven.

What though you’ve learned of envy’s wiles,
    The slanderous tongue, which oft beguiles?
The sweetest fruit on bush and trees,
    Is culled and plucked by birds and bees.

Although you’ve traced the landscape fair,
    And sought for knowledge rich and rare,
Gone to the depth of hidden ore,
    That richest mine you might explore,

Lines “To my Mother,” more I prize
    Than all the paintings ‘neath the skies;
And they will ever bring to me,
    Dear child, sweet memories of thee.

Although I prize the painter’s art,
    Yet more th’ effusions of the heart;
Kind feelings, sympathy and love,
    All arts and wealth I prize above.

Since then these trials but refine,
    Bring out deep caverns’ hidden mine,
Resign all to that power on high,
    Till sufferings cease and sorrows die.

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