To My Spring-Lancet
Years have passed since first we met,
Pliant and ever-faithful-slave!
Nobly thou standest by me yet,
Watchful as ever and as brave.
O, were the power of language thine.
To tell all thou hast seen and done,
Methinks the curious would incline.
Their ears to dwell they tales upon!
I love thee, bloodstaln’d, faithful friend!
As warrior loves his sword or shield;
For how on thee did I depend
When foes of Life were in the field!
Those blood spots on thy visage, tell
That thou, thro horrid scenes, hast past.
O, thou hast served me long and well;
And I shall love thee to the Last!
A thousand mem’ries cluster round thee
In all their freshness! thou dost speak
Of friends far distant-friends who found thee
Aye with thy master, prompt to wreak
Vengeance on foes who strove to kill
With blows well aim’d at heart or head—
Thieves that, with demon heart and will.
Would fain have on they vials fed.
O, They have blessed thee for thy aid,
When grateful eyes, thy presence, spoke;
Thou, anguish’d bosoms, glad hast made.
And miser’s tyrant sceptre broke.
Now, when ‘mong strangers, is our sphere.
Thou, to my heart, are but the more.
Endear’d—as many a woe-wring tear
Would plainly tell, if from me tore!
from Bloodletting Instruments in the National Museum of History and Technology ; Audrey Davis and Toby Appel; from Smithsonian Studies in History and Technology no.41 (1979)