658. Mater Dolorosa

William Barnes. 1801-1886

I'D a dream to-night
  As I fell asleep,
O! the touching sight
  Makes me still to weep:
Of my little lad,
Gone to leave me sad,
Ay, the child I had,
  But was not to keep.

As in heaven high,
  I my child did seek,
There in train came by
  Children fair and meek,
Each in lily white,
With a lamp alight;
Each was clear to sight,
  But they did not speak.

Then, a little sad,
Came my child in turn,
But the lamp he had,
  O it did not burn!
He, to clear my doubt,
Said, half turn'd about,
'Your tears put it out;
  Mother, never mourn.'

The Oxford Book of English Verse, HTML edition