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As from furnace-jaws out-reeking,
Glows the hot air ; beams are creaking,
Windows jarring, pillars sundering,
Children screaming, mothers wandering,
Cattle lowing
’Neath the ruin.
All is hurry, rescue, flight ;
Clear as day-light gleams the night;
Thro' the long and emulous band
Of many a hand
Flies the bucket; arching high
Water-streams from engines fly;
Howling, on the storm-blasts hie,
With the roaring flame to meet ;
Crackling in the arid wheat
It falleth ; in the granary,
In the spars and rafters dry;
And with mighty blast, as though
'Twould tear away, in violent flight,
With itself the Earth's own weight,
It into heaven's height doth grow,
In hopeless state,
Man succumbs to strength divine,
And amazed and supine
Sees his handy-works laid low.

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Bare and burnt
Is the space,
The wild storms' rough resting-place.
In the desolate window-cells
Horror broods ;
And from heaven the lofty clouds
Peer within.

One look- the last
Tow'rds the tomb
Of his home,
Doth the Man behind him cast-
Then cheerful grasps his staff to roam;
Whate'er the fire's rage hath o'erthrown,
One comfort sweet remains unmov’d,
He counts the heads of his belov'd,
And lo! not one dear head is lost !

'Tis receiv'd within the Earth ;
The mould it happily doth fill ;
Will it issue fairly forth,
To requite our toil and skill ?

If the cast should fail

Should the mould prove frail !
Ah! perhaps while hoping thus
Mischance e'en now hath stricken us.

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To the dark womb of holy earth,
Do we our handy-work confide ;
The sower too confides his seed,
And hopes that it shall yet shoot forth
To bless—if Heaven have so decreed.
Far costlier seed do we commit
In sorrow to the earth's dark womb,
And hope that, from the coffin, it
May blossom to a fairer doom.

From the tower
Tolls the bell,
Dull and heavy,
The funeral knell ;
Sad its melancholy notes convey
Some poor wand'rer on the long last way.

Ah! it is the wife, the dear one!
Ah! it is the tender mother !
Whom the gloomy Prince of Shades
From her mate's embraces leads ;
From the group of children dear,
Which blooming unto him she bare ;
Which growing on her faithful breast,
She watch'd with a mother's interest.

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