Part 5 out of 5
And doubt we yet? Thou call'st again;
A lower still, a sweeter strain;
A voice from Mercy's inmost shrine,
This very breath of Love divine.
Whispering it says to each apart,
"Come unto Me, thou trembling heart;"
And we must hope, so sweet the tone,
The precious words are all our own.
Hear them, kind Saviour--hear Thy Spouse
Low at Thy feet renew her vows;
Thine own dear promise she would plead
For us her true though fallen seed.
She pleads by all Thy mercies, told
Thy chosen witnesses of old,
Love's heralds sent to man forgiven,
One from the Cross, and one from Heaven.
This, of true penitents the chief,
To the lost spirit brings relief,
Lifting on high th' adored Name:-
"Sinners to save, Christ, Jesus came."
That, dearest of Thy bosom Friends,
Into the wavering heart descends:-
"What? fallen again? yet cheerful rise.
Thine Intercessor never dies."
The eye of Faith, that waxes bright
Each moment by thine altar's light,
Sees them e'en now: they still abide
In mystery kneeling at our side:
And with them every spirit blest,
From realms of triumph or of rest,
From Him who saw creation's morn,
Of all Thine angels eldest born,
To the poor babe, who died to-day,
Take part in our thanksgiving lay,
Watching the tearful joy and calm,
While sinners taste Thine heavenly balm.
Sweet awful hour! the only sound
One gentle footstep gliding round,
Offering by turns on Jesus' part
The Cross to every hand and heart.
Refresh us, Lord, to hold it fast;
And when Thy veil is drawn at last,
Let us depart where shadows cease,
With words of blessing and of peace.
Where is it mothers learn their love? -
In every Church a fountain springs
O'er which th' Eternal Dove
Hovers out softest wings.
What sparkles in that lucid flood
Is water, by gross mortals eyed:
But seen by Faith, 'tis blood
Out of a dear Friend's side.
A few calm words of faith and prayer,
A few bright drops of holy dew,
Shall work a wonder there
Earth's charmers never knew.
O happy arms, where cradled lies,
And ready for the Lord's embrace,
That precious sacrifice,
The darling of His grace!
Blest eyes, that see the smiling gleam
Upon the slumbering features glow,
When the life-giving stream
Touches the tender brow!
Or when the holy cross is signed,
And the young soldier duly sworn,
With true and fearless mind
To serve the Virgin-born.
But happiest ye, who sealed and blest
Back to your arms your treasure take,
With Jesus' mark impressed
To nurse for Jesus' sake:
To whom--as if in hallowed air
Ye knelt before some awful shrine -
His innocent gestures wear
A meaning half divine:
By whom Love's daily touch is seen
In strengthening form and freshening hue,
In the fixed brow serene,
The deep yet eager view. -
Who taught thy pure and even breath
To come and go with such sweet grace?
Whence thy reposing Faith,
Though in our frail embrace?
O tender gem, and full of Heaven!
Not in the twilight stars on high,
Not in moist flowers at even
See we our God so nigh.
Sweet one, make haste and know Him too,
Thine own adopting Father love,
That like thine earliest dew
Thy dying sweets may prove.
Oh! say not, dream not, heavenly notes
To childish ears are vain,
That the young mind at random floats,
And cannot reach the strain.
Dim or unheard, the words may fall,
And yet the heaven-taught mind
May learn the sacred air, and all
The harmony unwind.
Was not our Lord a little child,
Taught by degrees to pray,
By father dear and mother mild
Instructed day by day?
And loved He not of Heaven to talk
With children in His sight,
To meet them in His daily walk,
And to His arms invite?
What though around His throne of fire
The everlasting chant
Be wafted from the seraph choir
In glory jubilant?
Yet stoops He, ever pleased to mark
Our rude essays of love,
Faint as the pipe of wakening lark,
Heard by some twilight grove:
Yet is He near us, to survey
These bright and ordered files,
Like spring-flowers in their best array,
All silence and all smiles.
Save that each little voice in turn
Some glorious truth proclaims,
What sages would have died to learn,
Now taught by cottage dames.
And if some tones be false or low,
What are all prayers beneath
But cries of babes, that cannot know
Half the deep thought they breathe?
In His own words we Christ adore,
But angels, as we speak,
Higher above our meaning soar
Than we o'er children weak:
And yet His words mean more than they,
And yet He owns their praise:
Why should we think, He turns away
From infants' simple lays?
The shadow of th' Almighty's cloud
Calm on this tents of Israel lay,
While drooping paused twelve banners proud,
Till He arise and lead this way.
Then to the desert breeze unrolled,
Cheerly the waving pennons fly,
Lion or eagle--each bright fold
A lodestar to a warrior's eye.
So should Thy champions, ere this strife
By holy hands o'ershadowed kneel,
So, fearless for their charmed life,
Bear, to this end, Thy Spirit's seal.
Steady and pure as stars that beam
In middle heaven, all mist above,
Seen deepest in this frozen stream:-
Such is their high courageous love.
And soft as pure, and warm as bright,
They brood upon life's peaceful hour,
As if the Dove that guides their flight
Shook from her plumes a downy shower.
Spirit of might and sweetness too!
Now leading on the wars of God,
Now to green isles of shade and dew
Turning the waste Thy people trod;
Draw, Holy Ghost, Thy seven-fold veil
Between us and the fires of youth;
Breathe, Holy Ghost, Thy freshening gale,
Our fevered brow in age to soothe.
And oft as sin and sorrow tire,
This hallowed hour do Thou renew,
When beckoned up the awful choir
By pastoral hands, toward Thee we drew;
When trembling at this sacred rail
We hid our eyes and held our breath,
Felt Thee how strong, our hearts how frail,
And longed to own Thee to the death.
For ever on our souls be traced
That blessing dear, that dove-like hand,
A sheltering rock in Memory's waste,
O'er-shadowing all the weary land.
There is an awe in mortals' joy,
A deep mysterious fear
Half of the heart will still employ,
As if we drew too near
To Eden's portal, and those fires
That bicker round in wavy spires,
Forbidding, to our frail desires,
What cost us once so dear.
We cower before th' heart-searching eye
In rapture as its pain;
E'en wedded Love, till Thou be nigh,
Dares not believe her gain:
Then in the air she fearless springs,
The breath of Heaven beneath her wings,
And leaves her woodnote wild, and sings
A tuned and measured strain.
Ill fare the lay, though soft as dew
And free as air it fall,
That, with Thine altar full in view,
Thy votaries would enthrall
To a foul dream, of heathen night,
Lifting her torch in Love's despite,
And scaring with base wild-fire light
The sacred nuptial hall.
Far other strains, far other fires,
Our marriage-offering grace;
Welcome, all chaste and kind desires,
With even matron pace
Approaching down this hallowed aisle!
Where should ye seek Love's perfect smile,
But where your prayers were learned erewhile,
In her own native place?
Where, but on His benignest brow,
Who waits to bless you here?
Living, he owned no nuptial vow,
No bower to Fancy dear:
Love's very self--for Him no need
To nurse, on earth, the heavenly seed:
Yet comfort in His eye we read
For bridal joy and fear.
'Tis He who clasps the marriage band,
And fits the spousal ring,
Then leaves ye kneeling, hand in hand,
Out of His stores to bring
His Father's dearest blessing, shed
Of old on Isaac's nuptial bed,
Now on the board before ye spread
Of our all-bounteous King.
All blessings of the breast and womb,
Of Heaven and earth beneath,
Of converse high, and sacred home,
Are yours, in life and death.
Only kneel on, nor turn away
From the pure shrine, where Christ to-day
Will store each flower, ye duteous lay,
For an eternal wreath.
VISITATION AND COMMUNION OF THE SICK
O Youth and Joy, your airy tread
Too lightly springs by Sorrow's bed,
Your keen eye-glances are too bright,
Too restless for a sick man's sight.
Farewell; for one short life we part:
I rather woo the soothing art,
Which only souls in sufferings tried
Bear to their suffering brethren's side.
Where may we learn that gentle spell?
Mother of Martyrs, thou canst tell!
Thou, who didst watch thy dying Spouse
With pierced hands and bleeding brows,
Whose tears from age to age are shed
O'er sainted sons untimely dead,
If e'er we charm a soul in pain,
Thine is the key-note of our strain.
How sweet with thee to lift the latch,
Where Faith has kept her midnight watch,
Smiling on woe: with thee to kneel,
Where fixed, as if one prayer could heal,
She listens, till her pale eye glow
With joy, wild health can never know,
And each calm feature, ere we read,
Speaks, silently, thy glorious Creed.
Such have I seen: and while they poured
Their hearts in every contrite word,
How have I rather longed to kneel
And ask of them sweet pardon's seal;
How blessed the heavenly music brought
By thee to aid my faltering thought!
"Peace" ere we kneel, and when we cease
To pray, the farewell word is, "Peace."
I came again: the place was bright
"With something of celestial light" -
A simple Altar by the bed
For high Communion meetly spread,
Chalice, and plate, and snowy vest. -
We ate and drank: then calmly blest,
All mourners, one with dying breath,
We sate and talked of Jesus' death.
Once more I came: the silent room
Was veiled in sadly-soothing gloom,
And ready for her last abode
The pale form like a lily showed,
By Virgin fingers duly spread,
And prized for love of summer fled.
The light from those soft-smiling eyes
Had fleeted to its parent skies.
O soothe us, haunt us, night and day,
Ye gentle Spirits far away,
With whom we shared the cup of grace,
Then parted; ye to Christ's embrace,
We to this lonesome world again,
Yet mindful of th' unearthly strain
Practised with you at Eden's door,
To be sung on, where Angels soar,
With blended voices evermore.
BURIAL OF THE DEAD
And when the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her, and said unto
her, Weep not. And He came and touched the bier; and they that
bare him stood still. And He said, Young man, I say unto thee,
Arise.--St. Luke vii. 13, 14.
Who says, the wan autumnal soon
Beams with too faint a smile
To light up nature's face again,
And, though the year be on this wane,
With thoughts of spring the heart beguile?
Waft him, thou soft September breeze,
And gently lay him down
Within some circling woodland wall,
Where bright leaves, reddening ere they fall,
Wave gaily o'er the waters brown.
And let some graceful arch be there
With wreathed mullions proud,
With burnished ivy for its screen,
And moss, that glows as fresh and green
As thought beneath an April cloud. -
Who says the widow's heart must break,
The childless mother sink? -
A kinder truer voice I hear,
Which e'en beside that mournful bier
Whence parents' eyes would hopeless shrink,
Bids weep no more--O heart bereft,
How strange, to thee, that sound!
A widow o'er her only son,
Feeling more bitterly alone
For friends that press officious round.
Yet is the voice of comfort heard,
For Christ hath touched the bier -
The bearers wait with wondering eye,
The swelling bosom dares not sigh,
But all is still, 'twixt hope and fear.
E'en such an awful soothing calm
We sometimes see alight
On Christian mourners, while they wait
In silence, by some churchyard gate,
Their summons to this holy rite.
And such the tones of love, which break
The stillness of that hour,
Quelling th' embittered spirit's strife -
"The Resurrection and the Life
Am I: believe, and die no more."
Unchanged that voice--and though not yet
The dead sit up and speak,
Answering its call; we gladlier rest
Our darlings on earth's quiet breast,
And our hearts feel they must not break.
Far better they should sleep awhile
Within the Church's shade,
Nor wake, until new heaven, new earth,
Meet for their new immortal birth
For their abiding-place be made,
Than wander back to life, and lean
On our frail love once more.
'Tis sweet, as year by year we lose
Friends out of sight, in faith to muse
How grows in Paradise our store.
Then pass, ye mourners, cheerly on,
Through prayer unto the tomb,
Still, as ye watch life's falling leaf,
Gathering from every loss and grief
Hope of new spring and endless home.
Then cheerly to your work again
With hearts new-braced and set
To run, untired, love's blessed race.
As meet for those, who face to face
Over the grave their Lord have met.
CHURCHING OF WOMEN
Is there, in bowers of endless spring,
One known from all the seraph band
By softer voice, by smile and wing
More exquisitely bland!
Here let him speed: to-day this hallowed air
Is fragrant with a mother's first and fondest prayer.
Only let Heaven her fire impart,
No richer incense breathes on earth:
"A spouse with all a daughter's heart,"
Fresh from the perilous birth,
To the great Father lifts her pale glad eye,
Like a reviving flower when storms are hushed on high.
Oh, what a treasure of sweet thought
Is here! what hope and joy and love
All in one tender bosom brought,
For the all-gracious Dove
To brood o'er silently, and form for Heaven
Each passionate wish and dream to dear affection given.
Her fluttering heart, too keenly blest,
Would sicken, but she leans on Thee,
Sees Thee by faith on Mary's breast,
And breathes serene and free.
Slight tremblings only of her veil declare
Soft answers duly whispered to each soothing prayer.
We are too weak, when Thou dost bless,
To bear the joy--help, Virgin-born!
By Thine own mother's first caress,
That waked Thy natal morn!
Help, by the unexpressive smile, that made
A Heaven on earth around this couch where Thou wast laid.
The prayers are o'er: why slumberest thou so long,
Thou voice of sacred song?
Why swell'st thou not, like breeze from mountain cave,
High o'er the echoing nave,
This white-robed priest, as otherwhile, to guide,
Up to the Altar's northern side? -
A mourner's tale of shame and sad decay
Keeps back our glorious sacrifice to-day:
The widow'd Spouse of Christ: with ashes crown'd,
Her Christmas robes unbound,
She lingers in the porch for grief and fear,
Keeping her penance drear, -
Oh, is it nought to you? that idly gay,
Or coldly proud, ye turn away?
But if her warning tears in vain be spent,
Lo, to her altered eye this Law's stern fires are lent.
Each awful curse, that on Mount Ebal rang,
Peals with a direr clang
Out of that silver trump, whose tones of old
Forgiveness only told.
And who can blame the mother's fond affright,
Who sporting on some giddy height
Her infant sees, and springs with hurried hand
To snatch the rover from the dangerous strand?
But surer than all words the silent spell
(So Grecian legends tell)
When to her bird, too early 'scaped the nest,
She bares her tender breast,
Smiling he turns and spreads his little wing,
There to glide home, there safely cling.
So yearns our mother o'er each truant son,
So softly falls the lay in fear and wrath begun.
Wayward and spoiled she knows ye: the keen blast,
That braced her youth, is past:
The rod of discipline, the robe of shame -
She bears them in your name:
Only return and love. But ye perchance
Are deeper plunged in sorrow's trance:
Your God forgives, but ye no comfort take
Till ye have scourged the sins that in your conscience ache.
Oh, heavy laden soul! kneel down and hear
Thy penance in calm fear:
With thine own lips to sentence all thy sin;
Then, by the judge within
Absolved, in thankful sacrifice to part
For ever with thy sullen heart,
Nor on remorseful thoughts to brood, and stain
This glory of the Cross, forgiven and cheereth in vain.
FORMS OF PRAYER TO BE USED AT SEA
When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee. Isaiah
The shower of moonlight falls as still and clear
Upon this desert main
As where sweet flowers some pastoral garden cheer
With fragrance after rain:
The wild winds rustle in piping shrouds,
As in the quivering trees:
Like summer fields, beneath the shadowy clouds
The yielding waters darken in the breeze.
Thou too art here with thy soft inland tones,
Mother of our new birth;
The lonely ocean learns thy orisons,
And loves thy sacred mirth:
When storms are high, or when the fires of war
Come lightening round our course,
Thou breath'st a note like music from afar,
Tempering rude hearts with calm angelic force.
Far, far away, the homesick seaman's hoard,
Thy fragrant tokens live,
Like flower-leaves in a previous volume stored,
To solace and relieve
Some heart too weary of the restless world;
Or like thy Sabbath Cross,
That o'er this brightening billow streams unfurled,
Whatever gale the labouring vessel toss.
Oh, kindly soothing in high Victory's hour,
Or when a comrade dies,
In whose sweet presence Sorrow dares not lower,
Nor Expectation rise
Too high for earth; what mother's heart could spare
To the cold cheerless deep
Her flower and hope? but Thou art with him there,
Pledge of the untired arm and eye that cannot sleep:
The eye that watches o'er wild Ocean's dead,
Each in his coral cave,
Fondly as if the green turf wrapt his head
Fast by his father's grave, -
One moment, and the seeds of life shall spring
Out of the waste abyss,
And happy warriors triumph with their King
In worlds without a sea, unchanging orbs of bliss.
A thou hast testified of Me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness
also at Rome. Acts xxiii. 11.
Beneath the burning eastern sky
The Cross was raised at morn:
The widowed Church to weep stood by,
The world, to hate and scorn.
Now, journeying westward, evermore
We know the lonely Spouse
By the dear mark her Saviour bore
Traced on her patient brows.
At Rome she wears it, as of old
Upon th' accursed hill:
By monarchs clad in gems and gold,
She goes a mourner still.
She mourns that tender hearts should bend
Before a meaner shrine,
And upon Saint or Angel spend
The love that should be thine.
By day and night her sorrows fall
Where miscreant hands and rude
Have stained her pure ethereal pall
With many a martyr's blood.
And yearns not her parental heart,
To hear THEIR secret sighs,
Upon whose doubting way apart
Bewildering shadows rise?
Who to her side in peace would cling,
But fear to wake, and find
What they had deemed her genial wing
Was Error's soothing blind.
She treasures up each throbbing prayer:
Come, trembler, come and pour
Into her bosom all thy care,
For she has balm in store.
Her gentle teaching sweetly blends
With this clear light of Truth
The aerial gleam that Fancy lends
To solemn thoughts in youth. -
If thou hast loved, in hours of gloom,
To dream the dead are near,
And people all the lonely room
With guardian spirits dear,
Dream on the soothing dream at will:
The lurid mist is o'er,
That showed the righteous suffering still
Upon th' eternal shore.
If with thy heart the strains accord,
That on His altar-throne
Highest exalt thy glorious Lord,
Yet leave Him most thine own;
Oh, come to our Communion Feast:
There present, in the heart
As in the hands, th' eternal Priest
Will His true self impart. -
Thus, should thy soul misgiving turn
Back to the enchanted air,
Solace and warning thou mayst learn
From all that tempts thee there.
And, oh! by all the pangs and fears
Fraternal spirits know,
When for an elder's shame the tears
Of wakeful anguish flow,
Speak gently of our sister's fall:
Who knows but gentle love
May win her at our patient call
The surer way to prove?
KING CHARLES THE MARTYR
This is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure
grief, suffering wrongfully. 1 St. Peter ii. 19.
Praise to our pardoning God! though silent now
The thunders of the deep prophetic sky,
Though in our sight no powers of darkness bow
Before th' Apostles' glorious company;
The Martyrs' noble army still is ours,
Far in the North our fallen days have seen
How in her woe this tenderest spirit towers
For Jesus' sake in agony serene.
Praise to our God! not cottage hearths alone,
And shades impervious to the proud world's glare,
Such witness yield; a monarch from his throne
Springs to his Cross and finds his glory there.
Yes: whereso'er one trace of thee is found,
As in the Sacred Land, the shadows fall:
With beating hearts we roam the haunted ground,
Lone battle-field, or crumbling prison hall.
And there are aching solitary breasts,
Whose widowed walk with thought of thee is cheered
Our own, our royal Saint: thy memory rests
On many a prayer, the more for thee endeared.
True son of our dear Mother, early taught
With her to worship and for her to die,
Nursed in her aisles to more than kingly thought,
Oft in her solemn hours we dream thee nigh.
For thou didst love to trace her daily lore,
And where we look for comfort or for calm,
Over the self-same lines to bend, and pour
Thy heart with hers in some victorious psalm.
And well did she thy loyal love repay;
When all forsook, her Angels still were nigh,
Chained and bereft, and on thy funeral way,
Straight to the Cross she turned thy dying eye
And yearly now, before the Martyrs' King,
For thee she offers her maternal tears,
Calls us, like thee, to His dear feet to cling,
And bury in His wounds our earthly fears.
The Angels hear, and there is mirth in Heaven,
Fit prelude of the joy, when spirits won
Like those to patient Faith, shall rise forgiven,
And at their Saviour's knees thy bright example own.
THE RESTORATION OF THE ROYAL FAMILY
And Barzillai said unto the King, How long have I to live, that I
should go up with the King unto Jerusalem? 2 Samuel xix. 34.
As when the Paschal week is o'er,
Sleeps in the silent aisles no more
The breath of sacred song,
But by the rising Saviour's light
Awakened soars in airy flight,
Or deepening rolls along;
The while round altar, niche, and shrine,
The funeral evergreens entwine,
And a dark brilliance cast,
The brighter for their hues of gloom,
Tokens of Him, who through the tomb
Into high glory passed:
Such were the lights and such the strains.
When proudly streamed o'er ocean plains
Our own returning Cross;
For with that triumph seemed to float
Far on the breeze one dirge-like note
Of orphanhood and loss.
Father and King, oh where art thou?
A greener wreath adorns thy brow,
And clearer rays surround;
O, for one hour of prayer like thine,
To plead before th' all-ruling shrine
For Britain lost and found!
And he, whose mild persuasive voice
Taught us in trials to rejoice,
Most like a faithful dove,
That by some ruined homestead builds,
And pours to the forsaken fields
His wonted lay of love:
Why comes he not to bear his part,
To lift and guide th' exulting heart? -
A hand that cannot spars
Lies heavy on his gentle breast:
We wish him health; he sighs for rest,
And Heaven accepts the prayer.
Yes, go in peace, dear placid spright,
Ill spared; but would we store aright
Thy serious sweet farewell,
We need not grudge thee to the skies,
Sure after thee in time to rise,
With thee for ever dwell.
Till then, whene'er with duteous hand,
Year after year, my native Land
Her royal offering brings,
Upon the Altar lays the Crown,
And spreads her robes of old renown
Before the King of kings.
Be some kind spirit, likest thine,
Ever at hand, with airs divine
The wandering heart to seize;
Whispering, "How long hast thou to live,
That thou should'st Hope or Fancy gave
To flowers or crowns like these?"
As I was with Moses, so I will be with thee; I will not fail thee,
nor forsake thee. Joshua i. 5.
The voice that from the glory came
To tell how Moses died unseen,
And waken Joshua's spear of flame
To victory on the mountains green,
Its trumpet tones are sounding still,
When Kings or Parents pass away,
They greet us with a cheering thrill
Of power and comfort in decay.
Behind thus soft bright summer cloud
That makes such haste to melt and die,
Our wistful gaze is oft allowed
A glimpse of the unchanging sky:
Let storm and darkness do their worst;
For the lost dream the heart may ache,
The heart may ache, but may not burst;
Heaven will not leave thee nor forsake.
One rock amid the weltering floods,
One torch in a tempestuous night,
One changeless pine in fading woods:-
Such is the thought of Love and Might,
True Might and ever-present Love,
When death is busy near the throne,
Auth Sorrow her keen sting would prove
On Monarchs orphaned and alone.
In that lorn hour and desolate,
Who could endure a crown? but He,
Who singly bore the world's sad weight,
Is near, to whisper, "Lean on Me:
Thy days of toil, thy nights of care,
Sad lonely dreams in crowded hall,
Darkness within, while pageants glare
Around--the Cross supports them all."
Oh, Promise of undying Love!
While Monarchs seek thee for repose,
Far in the nameless mountain cove
Each pastoral heart thy bounty knows.
Ye, who in place of shepherds true
Come trembling to their awful trust,
Lo here the fountain to imbue
With strength and hope your feeble dust.
Not upon Kings or Priests alone
The power of that dear word is spent;
It chants to all in softest tone
The lowly lesson of Content:
Heaven's light is poured on high and low;
To high and low Heaven's Angel spake;
"Resign thee to thy weal or woe,
I ne'er will leave thee nor forsake."
After this, the congregation shall be desired, secretly in their
prayers, to make their humble supplications to God for all these
things: for the which prayers there shall be silence kept for a
After which shall be sung or said by the Bishop (the persons to be
ordained Priests all kneeling), "Veni, Creator Spiritus." Rubric
in the Office for Ordering of Priests.
'Twas silence in Thy temple, Lord,
When slowly through the hallowed air
The spreading cloud of incense soared,
Charged with the breath of Israel's prayer.
'Twas silence round Thy throne on high,
When the last wondrous seal unclosed,
And in this portals of the sky
Thine armies awfully reposed.
And this deep pause, that o'er us now
Is hovering--comes it not of Thee?
Is it not like a mother's vow
When, with her darling on her knee,
She weighs and numbers o'er and o'er
Love's treasure hid in her fond breast,
To cull from that exhaustless store
The dearest blessing and the best?
And where shall mother's bosom find,
With all its deep love-learned skill,
A prayer so sweetly to her mind,
As, in this sacred hour and still,
Is wafted from the white-robed choir,
Ere yet the pure high-breathed lay,
"Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire,"
Rise floating on its dove-like way.
And when it comes, so deep and clear
The strain, so soft the melting fall,
It seems not to th' entranced ear
Less than Thine own heart-cheering call.
Spirit of Christ--Thine earnest given
That these our prayers are heard, and they,
Who grasp, this hour, the sword of Heaven,
Shall feel Thee on their weary way.
Oft as at morn or soothing eve
Over the Holy Fount they lean,
Their fading garland freshly weave,
Or fan them with Thine airs serene.
Spirit of Light and Truth! to Thee
We trust them in that musing hour,
Till they, with open heart and free.
Teach all Thy word in all its power.
When foemen watch their tents by night,
And mists hang wide o'er moor and fell,
Spirit of Counsel and of Might,
Their pastoral warfare guide Thou well.
And, oh! when worn and tired they sigh
With that more fearful war within,
When Passion's storms are loud and high,
And brooding o'er remembered sin
The heart dies down--oh, mightiest then,
Come ever true, come ever near,
And wake their slumbering love again,
Spirit of God's most holy Fear!