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I Can Not Call Her Mother

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I Can Not Call Her Mother

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I Can Not Call Her Mother

The wedding rite is over
And though I turn aside
To keep the guests from seeing
My tears I can not hide

I wreathed my face in smiling
As I led my little brother
To  greet my father's chosen one
But I could not call her mother

My father in the sunshine
Of brighter days to come
May half forget the shadow
That darkens our old home

His heart is no more lonely
But I and little brother
It's orphans we shall ever be
God can give us but one mother

They have born (sic) my mother's picture
From its accustomed place
And placed beside my father's
A younger, fairer face

And they have made her chamber dear
The boudoir of another
But I can not forget her
My own my angel mother

From Songs the Whalemen Sang, Huntington
From the Journal of the Lexington, 1853
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