England! thy Christmas mirth is mixed with tears,
While pinching penury and want despoil
Ten thousand homes, where dwelt thy sons of toil;
Gone are thrifty fruits of struggling years.
Against the brighter past, thy doubts and fears
See future clouds that darken like a foil;
Yet seeds of joy find root in sorrow’s soil;
Endure and trust, while Charity divine
Thy hungry feeds, and clothes thy shiv’ring poor;
Then, when the day of peace again shall shine
With golden gladness o’er yon western shore,
A nobler thrice bless’d commerce shall be thine,
Stain’d with the guilt of slavery no more.
Manchester, Dec. 22, 1862