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And they all melt into sweetness,
And fill the earth with Song.

Above God's world bends Heaven,
With day's kiss pure and bright,

Or folds her still more fondly
In the tender shade of night;

And she casts back Heaven's sweetness,
In fragrant love and light.

God's world has one great echo;

Whether calm blue mists are curled, Or lingering dew-drops quiver,

Or red storms are unfurled; The same deep love is throbbing

Through the great heart of God's world.

Man's world is black and blighted,
Steeped through with self and sin;

And should his feeble purpose
Some feeble good begin,

The work is marred and tainted
By Leprosy within.

Man's world is bleak and bitter;

Wherever he has trod
He spoils the tender beauty

That blossoms on the sod,
And blasts the loving Heaven

Of the great, good world of God.

There Strength on coward weakness

In cruel might will roll;
Beauty and Joy are cankers

That eat away the soul;
And Love—Oh God, avenge it—

The plague-spot of the whole.

Man's world is Pain and Terror;

He found it pure and fair,
And wove in nets of sorrow

The golden summer air.
Black, hideous, cold, and dreary,

Man's curse, not God's, is there.

And yet God's world is speaking:
Man will not hear it call;

But listens where the echoes
Of his own discords fall,

Then clamours back to Heaven
That God has done it all.

Oh God, man's heart is darkened,
He will not understand!

Show him Thy cloud and fire;
And, with Thine own right hand,

Then lead him through his desert,
Back to Thy Holy Land!



WAS with my lady when she died:
I it was who guided her weak hand
For a blessing on each little head,
Laid her baby by her on the bed,
Heard the words they could not understand.

And I drew them round my knee that night,
Hushed their childish glee, and made them say
They would keep her words with loving tears,
They would not forget her dying fears
Lest the thought of her should fade away.

I, who guessed what her last dread had been,
Made a promise to that still, cold face,
That her children's hearts, at any cost,
Should be with the mother they had lost,
When a stranger came to take her place.

And I knew so much! for I had lived
With my lady since her childhood: known
What her young and happy days had been,
And the grief no other eyes had seen
I had watched and sorrowed for alone.

Ah! she once had such a happy smile!

I had known how sorely she was tried:
Six short years before, her eyes were bright
As her little blue-eyed May's that night,

When she stood by her dead mother's side.

No—I will not say he was unkind;

But she had been used to love and praise.
He was somewhat grave—perhaps, in truth,
Could not weave her joyous, smiling youth,

Into all his stern and serious ways.

She, who should have reigned a blooming flower,
First in pride and honour, as in grace,—
She, whose will had once ruled all around,
Queen and darling of us all—she found
Change indeed in that cold, stately place.

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