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Titlepage Illustration: The Faithful Guardian. more
A small child, presumably a little girl, wearing a frilly lace bonnet, a dress, white stockings and tiny slippers, sits or half-kneels on the floor clutching a small dog—a puppy judging by the size of its paws—by the neck and mouth. The infant girl is looking straight towards the viewer. The picture is captioned “The Faithful Guardian.”
The poem (a few pages later) was originally published as “Etty’s Rover” by the poet and writer Letitia Elizabeth Landon (1802 – 1838), signing herself L.E.L.
The Faithful Guardian, by L.E.L.
Thou lovely and thou happy child,
Ah! how I envy thee!
I should be glad to change our state,
If such a change might be.
And yet it is a lingering joy
To watch a thing so fair
To think that in our weary life
Such pleasant moments are.
A little monarch thou art there,
And of a fairy realm,
Without a foe to overthrow,
A care to overwhelm.
Thy world is in thy own glad will,
And in each fresh delight,
And in thy unused heart, which makes
Its own, its golden light.
With no misgivings in thy past,
Thy future with no fear;
The present circles thee around,
An angel’s atmosphere.