Thy Child-Picture

By George Sterling

O gentlest beauty! pure, untroubled face!
    O breaking bud, unmarred by grief and fear!
    What dews were thine from Heaven? what waters clear
From earth ? what zephyrs in thy sheltered place
Nurtured thy delicate and girlish grace?
    What smile of innocence, what firstling tear,
    Told that a joy or sorrow waited near
Whose hands as yet could leave so secret trace?

Across what years that pensive gaze hath come,
    To find at last its haven in my breast !
    O dear child-face! O vision tenderest
Of all the dreams of Time! thou holdest dumb
    My lips a little—how could I divine
    That I should tremble nearest Heaven at thine?


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