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To a Child Reading

by Edward Doyle

  My darling, spell the words out. You may creep
    Across the syllables on hands and knees,
    And stumble often, yet pass me with ease
  And reach the spring upon the summit steep.
  Oh, I could lay me down, dear child, and weep
    These charr’d orbs out, but that you then might cease
    Your upward effort, and with inquiries
  Stoop down and probe my heart too deep, too deep!
  I thirst for Knowledge. Oh, for an endless drink
    Your goblet leaks the whole way from the spring–
  No matter, to its rim a few drops cling,
  And these refresh me with the joy to think
    That you, my darling, have the morning’s wing
  To cross the mountain at whose base I sink.

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