Kirtland Temple
A National Historic Landmark

Sinless as Celestial Spirits


Lines written on the birth of the infant son of Mrs. Emma, widow of the late General Joseph Smith.

BY MISS ELIZA R. SNOW.

Sinless as celestial spirits—
     Lovely as a morning flow'r
Comes the smiling infant stranger
     In an evil-omen'd hour.

In an hour of lamentation—
     In a time—a season when
Zion's noblest sons are fallen,
     By the hands of wicked men.

In an hour when peace and safety
     Have the civil banner fled—
In a day when legal justice
     Covers its dishonor'd head

In an age when saints must s[u]ffer
     Without mercy or redress;
Comes to meet a generation
     That has made it fatherless

Not to share a father's fondness—
     Not to know its father's worth—
By the arm of persecution
     'Tis an orphan at its birth!

Smile, sweet babe! Thou art unconscious
     Of thy great, untimely loss!
The broad stroke of thy bereavement,
     Zion's pathway seem'd to cross!

Till in childhood thou had'st known him,
     Had the age, thy father spar'd;
The endearment of remembrance,
     Through thy life time thou had'st shar'd.

Thou may'st draw from love and kindness
     All a mother can bestow;
But alas! On earth, a father
     You art destin'd not to know!

Nauvoo, Nov. 24th, 1844.

Source: Times and Seasons 5 (1 December 1844): 735.

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