Home  »  Poems of Places An Anthology in 31 Volumes  »  Monument of Mrs. Howard

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV. 1876–79.


Monument of Mrs. Howard

By William Wordsworth (1770–1850)

In Wetheral Church, near Corby, on the Banks of the Eden

STRETCHED on the dying mother’s lap lies dead

Her new-born babe; dire ending of bright hope!

But sculpture here, with the divinest scope

Of luminous faith, heavenward hath raised that head

So patiently; and through one hand has spread

A touch so tender for the insensate child,—

(Earth’s lingering love to parting reconciled,

Brief parting, for the spirit is all but fled,)—

That we, who contemplate the turns of life

Through this still medium, are consoled and cheered;

Feel with the mother, think the severed wife

Is less to be lamented than revered;

And own that art, triumphant over strife

And pain, hath powers to eternity endeared.