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My Childhood Home I See Again - Poem by Abraham Lincoln

I

My childhood's home I see again,
And sadden with the view;
And still, as memory crowds my brain,
There's pleasure in it too.

O Memory! thou midway world
'Twixt earth and paradise,
Where things decayed and loved ones lost
In dreamy shadows rise,

And, freed from all that's earthly vile,
Seem hallowed, pure, and bright,
Like scenes in some enchanted isle
All bathed in liquid light.

As dusky mountains please the eye
When twilight chases day;
As bugle-tones that, passing by,
In distance die away;

As leaving some grand waterfall,
We, lingering, list its roar--
So memory will hallow all
We've known, but know no more.

Near twenty years have passed away
Since here I bid farewell
To woods and fields, and scenes of play,
And playmates loved so well.

Where many were, but few remain
Of old familiar things;
But seeing them, to mind again
The lost and absent brings.

The friends I left that parting day,
How changed, as time has sped!
Young childhood grown, strong manhood gray,
And half of all are dead.

I hear the loved survivors tell
How nought from death could save,
Till every sound appears a knell,
And every spot a grave.

I range the fields with pensive tread,
And pace the hollow rooms,
And feel (companion of the dead)
I'm living in the tombs.

II

But here's an object more of dread
Than ought the grave contains--
A human form with reason fled,
While wretched life remains.

Poor Matthew! Once of genius bright,
A fortune-favored child--
Now locked for aye, in mental night,
A haggard mad-man wild.

Poor Matthew! I have ne'er forgot,
When first, with maddened will,
Yourself you maimed, your father fought,
And mother strove to kill;

When terror spread, and neighbors ran,
Your dange'rous strength to bind;
And soon, a howling crazy man
Your limbs were fast confined.

How then you strove and shrieked aloud,
Your bones and sinews bared;
And fiendish on the gazing crowd,
With burning eye-balls glared--

And begged, and swore, and wept and prayed
With maniac laught[ter?] joined--
How fearful were those signs displayed
By pangs that killed thy mind!

And when at length, tho' drear and long,
Time smoothed thy fiercer woes,
How plaintively thy mournful song
Upon the still night rose.

I've heard it oft, as if I dreamed,
Far distant, sweet, and lone--
The funeral dirge, it ever seemed
Of reason dead and gone.

To drink it's strains, I've stole away,
All stealthily and still,
Ere yet the rising God of day
Had streaked the Eastern hill.

Air held his breath; trees, with the spell,
Seemed sorrowing angels round,
Whose swelling tears in dew-drops fell
Upon the listening ground.

But this is past; and nought remains,
That raised thee o'er the brute.
Thy piercing shrieks, and soothing strains,
Are like, forever mute.

Now fare thee well--more thou the cause,
Than subject now of woe.
All mental pangs, by time's kind laws,
Hast lost the power to know.

O death! Thou awe-inspiring prince,
That keepst the world in fear;
Why dost thos tear more blest ones hence,
And leave him ling'ring here?


Comments about My Childhood Home I See Again by Abraham Lincoln

  • Rookie - 0 Points Steve Park (11/14/2016 12:11:00 AM)

    I didn't actually realize he was a literary genius as well as a skilled politician. This man really had a way with words and a deeper understanding of ART. (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Gold Star - 146,123 Points Fabrizio Frosini (12/11/2015 1:32:00 PM)

    the 1st part is also in the previous page.. with a different title.. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 30,749 Points Is It Poetry (9/22/2015 2:07:00 PM)

    To think his life was snuffed out
    by one whom'd act each day about
    one turn upon each day and night
    would come again to one so vile.. iip (Report) Reply

Read all 6 comments »

Poems About Home

  1. 1. They Went Home , Maya Angelou
  2. 2. To A Daughter Leaving Home , Linda Pastan
  3. 3. Home And Love , Robert William Service
  4. 4. Home They Brought Her Warrior Dead , Alfred Lord Tennyson
  5. 5. Home Burial , Robert Frost
  6. 6. Welcome Home , Spike Milligan
  7. 7. My Childhood Home I See Again , Abraham Lincoln
  8. 8. Home Thoughts, From Abroad , Robert Browning
  9. 9. Home For Thanksgiving , Linda Pastan
  10. 10. A Letter Home , Siegfried Sassoon
  11. 11. Coming Home , Ernestine Northover
  12. 12. Home After Three Months Away , Robert Lowell
  13. 13. Home , Anne Brontë
  14. 14. Journey Home , Rabindranath Tagore
  15. 15. Letter Home , Natasha Trethewey
  16. 16. A Home Song , Henry Van Dyke
  17. 17. Home, Sweet Home , John Howard Payne
  18. 18. Home Thoughts , Claude McKay
  19. 19. Bound For Your Distant Home , Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin
  20. 20. Graydigger's Home , William Stafford
  21. 21. Home Thoughts, From The Sea , Robert Browning
  22. 22. At Home , Christina Georgina Rossetti
  23. 23. Variations At Home And Abroad , Kenneth Koch
  24. 24. Down Home , Lucy Maud Montgomery
  25. 25. The Home , Rabindranath Tagore
  26. 26. Home , Rupert Brooke
  27. 27. Home From Abroad , Laurie Lee
  28. 28. The Wrong Way Home , James Tate
  29. 29. Home Sweet Home , Siyabonga A Nxumalo
  30. 30. A Martian Sends A Postcard Home , Craig Raine
  31. 31. Away From Home Are Some And I— , Emily Dickinson
  32. 32. Home , Zbigniew Herbert
  33. 33. My Home , Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  34. 34. The Old Home Calls , Lucy Maud Montgomery
  35. 35. The Hangman At Home , Carl Sandburg
  36. 36. Home, Sweet Home , Frances Ellen Watkins Harper
  37. 37. The Princess: A Medley: Home They Brough.. , Alfred Lord Tennyson
  38. 38. Home , Wilfrid Wilson Gibson
  39. 39. Who Goes Home? , Gilbert Keith Chesterton
  40. 40. Oh Stay At Home, My Lad , Alfred Edward Housman
  41. 41. On Home Beaches , Les Murray
  42. 42. Almost Home , Sandra Fowler
  43. 43. When The Children Come Home , Henry Lawson
  44. 44. .home Sweet Home , Nikunj Sharma
  45. 45. Prophets At Home , Rudyard Kipling
  46. 46. Come Home, Father! , Henry Clay Work
  47. 47. How Bateese Came Home , William Henry Drummond
  48. 48. Night In The Old Home , Thomas Hardy
  49. 49. Sweet Stay-At-Home , William Henry Davies
  50. 50. Lines Written From Home , Anne Brontë
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