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Asylum Life; Or, The Advantages Of A Disadvantage

Creator: n/a
Date: August 1853
Publication: The Opal
Source: New York State Library


This poem appeared in The Opal. It captures a very positive attitude toward life in the New York State Asylum. What factors could influence the tone of the poem? What could shape the voice found here? Who is the audience? It is very difficult to reconcile the vision presented here and the one outlined in Astounding Disclosures!

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I have no care for copper or coin,
I have no fear of any one's frown;
I'm fed by the hand that feedeth the best,
And seldom molested is my sweet rest.


I have walks to take, and news to read,
With chit-chat and work the hours to speed;
Good company, age, as good as the great
Who have the charge of the "Empire State."


When ill, we have nurses; kind they be,
And doctors too, without extra fee;
When well, we can leave for homes far and near,
While the Word of Life may be conned with care.


Though sad, we may wait till brighter we grow,
And health and good humor our faces make glow;
When merry music may lend us her thrall,
And consoling each other be less sad withall.


And Love may abide, defended by prayer,
And our hearts and our hopes be brightened elsewhere;
We may write to our homes, and see our dear friends,
And contented and blessed our destiny ends.