Helen Blackwood, Baroness Dufferrin (1807-1867)
To My Dear Son, on his 21st Birthday, with a Silver Lamp,
on which was Engraved «Fiat Lux»
How shall I bless thee? Human love
Is all too poor in passionate words;
The heart aches with a sense above
All language that the lip affords:
Therefore a symbol shall express
My love,–a thing not rare or strange,
Knowing no shadow and no change.
Light! which, of all the lovely shows
To our poor world of shadows given,
The fervent Prophet-voices chose
Alone as attribute of heaven!
At a most solemn pause we stand:
From this day forth, for evermore,
The weak but loving human hand
Must cease to guide thee as of yore.
Then, as thro’ life thy footsteps stray,
And earthly beacons dimly shine,
«Let there be light» upon thy way,
And holier guidance far than mine!
«Let there be light» in thy clear soul,
When passion tempts and doubts assail;
When grief’s dark tempests o’er thee roll,
«Let there be light» that shall not fail!
So, Angel guarded, may’st thou tread
The narrow path which few may find,
And at the end look back, nor dread
To count the vanished years behind!
And pray that she, whose hand doth trace
This heart-warm prayer,–when life is past–
May see and know thy blessed face,
In God’s own glorious light at last!
To My Dear Son, on his 21st Birthday, with a Silver Lamp, on which was
Engraved «Fiat Lux» (1847)