Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
IX. A New-born Child and Its Parent
By Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834)
(To a friend who asked the author how he felt when the nurse first presented his infant to him)

CHARLES! my slow heart was only sad, when first
  I scanned that face of feeble infancy;
For dimly on my thoughtful spirit burst
  All I had been, and all my child might be!
But when I saw it on its mother’s arm,        5
  And hanging at her bosom (she the while
  Bent o’er its features with a tearful smile)
  Then I was thrilled and melted, and most warm
Impressed a father’s kiss; and all beguiled
  Of dark remembrance and presageful fear,        10
  I seemed to see an angel form appear—
  ’T was even thine, beloved woman mild!
So for the mother’s sake the child was dear,
  And dearer was the mother for the child.

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