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Bind their souls to me for ever
By the love within their own."

But the Voice cried :—" Once remember

You devoted soul and mind To the welfare of your brethren,

And the service of your kind. Now, what sorrow can you comfort?

You, who lie in helpless pain, With an impotent compassion

Fretting out your life in vain."

"Nay;" and then the gentle answer

Rose more loud, and full, and clear: "For the sake of all my brethren

I thank God that I am here!
Poor had been my Life's best efforts,

Now I waste no thought or breath— For the prayer of those who suffer

Has the strength of Love and Death."

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THE CARVER'S LESSON.

RUST me, no mere skill of subtle tracery, No mere practice of a dexterous hand, Will suffice, without a hidden spirit, That we may, or may not, understand.

And those quaint old fragments that are left us
Have their power in this,—the Carver brought

Earnest care, and reverent patience, only
Worthily to clothe some noble thought.

Shut then in the petals of the flowers,
Round the stems of all the lilies twine,

Hide beneath each bird's or angel's pinion,
Some wise meaning or some thought divine.

Place in stony hands that pray for ever
Tender words of peace, and strive to wind

Round the leafy scrolls and fretted niches
Some true, loving message to your kind.

Some will praise, some blame, and, soon forgetting,
Come and go, nor even pause to gaze;

Only now and then a passing stranger
Just may loiter with a word of praise.

But I think, when years have floated onward,
And the stone is grey, and dim, and old,

And the hand forgotten that has carved it,
And the heart that dreamt it still and cold;

There may come some weary soul, o'erladen
With perplexed struggle in his brain,

Or, it may be, fretted with life's turmoil,
Or made sore with some perpetual pain.

Then, I think those stony hands will open,

And the gentle lilies overflow,
With the blessing and the loving token

That you hid there many years ago.

And the tendrils will unroll, and teach him
How to solve the problem of his pain;

And the birds' and angels' wings shake downward
On his heart a sweet and tender rain.

While he marvels at his fancy, reading
Meaning in that quaint and ancient scroll,

Little guessing that the loving Carver
Left a message for his weary soul.

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THREE ROSES.

UST when the red June Roses blow
She gave me one,—a year ago.
A Rose whose crimson breath revealed
The secret that its heart concealed,
And whose half shy, half tender grace
Blushed back upon the giver's face.
A year ago—a year ago—
To hope was not to know.

Just when the red June Roses blow
I plucked her one,—a month ago:
Its half-blown crimson to eclipse,
I laid it on her smiling lips;
The balmy fragrance of the south
Drew sweetness from her sweeter mouth.

Swiftly do golden hours creep,—

To hold is not to keep.

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