The cottage was a thatched one, the outside old and mean,
Yet everything within that cot was wondrous neat and clean.
The night was dark and stormy, the wind was howling wild,
A patient mother watched beside the death-bed of her child-
A little worn-out creature, his once bright eyes grown dim.
It was a collier's wife and child; they called him "Little Jim."
And oh, to see the briny tears fast hurrying down her cheek,
As she offered up a prayer in thought-she was afraid to speak-
Lest she might waken one she loved far better than her life;
For she had all a mother's heart, had that poor collier's wife.
With hands uplifted-see, she kneels beside the sufferer's bed,
And prays that He will spare her boy, and take herself instead.
She gets her answer from the child, sort fall these words from him:
"Mother, the angels do so smile, and beckon Little Jim.
I have no pain, dear mother, now, but, oh, I am so dry.
Just moisten poor Jim's lips again, And, mother, don't you cry."
With gentle, trembling hands, she held a tea-cup to his lips;
He smiled to thank her as he took three little tiny sips.
"Tell father when he comes from work, I said good-night to him;
And, mother, now I'll go to sleep." Alas! poor Little Jim.
She saw that he was dying, that the child she loved so dear
Had uttered the last words that she might ever hope to hear I
The cottage door is opened; the collier's step Is heard;
The father and the mother meet, yet neither speak a word.
He felt that all was over, he knew his child was dead:
He took the candle in his hand, and walked towards the bed.
His quivering lips gave token of the grief he'd fain conceal.
And, see, his wife has joined him; the stricken couple kneel.
With hearts bowed down with sadness, they humbly ask of Him
In heaven once more to meet again their own poor "Little Jim."