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Short poem

Annie Louisa Walker (1836-1907)

Women's Rights

              1You cannot rob us of the rights we cherish,
              2  Nor turn our thoughts away
              3From the bright picture of a "Woman's Mission"
              4  Our hearts portray.

              5We claim to dwell, in quiet and seclusion,
              6  Beneath the household roof,--
              7From the great world's harsh strife, and jarring voices,
              8  To stand aloof;--

              9Not in a dreamy and inane abstraction
            10  To sleep our life away,
            11But, gathering up the brightness of home sunshine,
            12  To deck our way.

            13As humble plants by country hedgerows growing,
            14  That treasure up the rain,
            15And yield in odours, ere the day's declining,
            16  The gift again;

            17So let us, unobtrusive and unnoticed,
            18  But happy none the less,
            19Be privileged to fill the air around us
            20  With happiness;

            21To live, unknown beyond the cherished circle,
            22  Which we can bless and aid;
            23To die, and not a heart that does not love us
            24  Know where we're laid.

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: [Annie L. Walker] Leaves from the Backwoods (Montreal: John Lovell, 1862), pp. 106-07. B-10 2803 Fisher Library.
First publication date: 1861
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1998.
Recent editing: 2:2002/1/30

Rhyme: abcb

Other poems by Annie Louisa Walker