The Old House

MY little birds, with backs as brown
As sand, and throats as white as frost,
I 've searched the summer up and down,
And think the other birds have lost
The tunes you sang, so sweet, so low,
About the old house, long ago.
My little flowers, that with your bloom
So hid the grass you grew upon,
A child’s foot scarce had any room
Between you, — are you dead and gone?
I 've searched through fields and gardens rare,
Nor found your likeness anywhere.
My little hearts, that beat so high
With love to God, and trust in men,
Oh, come to me, and say if I
But dream, or was I dreaming then,
What time we sat within the glow
Of the old-house hearth, long ago ?
My little hearts, so fond, so true,
I searched the world all far and wide,
And never found the like of you :
God grant we meet the other side
The darkness ’twixt us now that stands,
In that new house not made with hands !