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By forest fountains hast thou seen
The winsome, fairy sight
Some dark, and some so bright'
As when upon a velvet lawn,
Beneath the noon tide ray,
Shadows and sunlight play.
But in the moss a sunshine dwells
No gloomy sky can hide;
Will yet with this reside.
In hearts where sorrow's shadow lies,
Are spots of dark, dark green,
There's sunlit moss between.
And happy, in a world like this,
Where clouds so often frown,
Hath sunshine of its own.
Good, kind, true, holy words, dropt in conversation, may be little thought of, but they are like seeds of flower, or fruitful tree, falling by the wayside, borne by some bird afar, haply thereafter to fringe with beauty some heretofore barren mountain-side, or make some nook of the wilderness to rejoice.
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Stand still, my soul, in the silent dark
I would question thee,
With God and me!
What, my soul, was thy errand here?
Was it mirth or ease,
"Nay, none of these!"
Speak, soul, aright in His holy sight
Whose eye looks still
"To do his will!"
What hast thou done, Oh soul of mine,
That thou tremblest so ?—
He bade thee go?
What silent all!—art sad of cheer?
Art fearful now?
How brave wert thou?
Aha! thou tremblest!—well I see
Thou 'rt craven grown. It is so hard with God and me
To stand alone !—
Summon thy sunshine bravery back
Oh, wretched sprite! Let me hear thy voice through this deep and black
Mt Soul And I.
What hast thou wrought for Right and Truth,
For God and man,
To life's mid span 1
Ah, soul of mine, thy tones I hear,
But weak and low,
They come and go..
"I have wrestled stoutly with the Wrong,
And borne the Right,
To life and light.
"Wherever Freedom shivered a chain,
God speed, quoth I;
I gave the lie."
Ah, soul of mine ! ah, soul of mine!
Thy deeds are well,
My soul, pray tell.
"Of all the work my hand hath wrought
Beneath the sky,
No gain have I."
Go to, go to!—for thy very self
Thy deeds were done:
Your end is one!
My Soul And I.
And where art thou going, soul of mine 1
Canst see the end?
Evermore doth tend?
What daunts thee now ?—what shakes thee so?
My sad soul, say: "I see a cloud like a curtain low
Hang o'er my way.
"Whither I go I cannot tell;
That cloud hangs black,
Across my track.
"I see its shadow coldly enwrap
The souls before,
To return no more.
"They shrink, they shudder, dear God ! they kneel
To thee in prayer.
That it still is there.
"In vain they turn from the dread Before
To the Known and Gone;
Their feet glide on.
"Yet, at times, I see upon sweet pale faces,
A light begin
And shrines within.
Mt Soul And I.
"And at times methinks their cold lips move
With hymn and prayer,
And hope, were there.
"I call on the souls who have left the light
To reveal their lot;
As they answer not.
"But I bear around me sighs of pain
And the cry of fear, And a sound like the slow, sad dropping of rain
Each drop a tear!
"Ah, the cloud is dark, and day by day,
I am moving thither:
God pity me !—Whither V
Ah, soul of mine ! so brave and wise
In the life-storm loud, Fronting so calmly all human eyes,
In the sun-lit crowd!
Now standing apart with God and me,
Thou art weakness all, Gazing vainly after the things to be,
Through Death's dread wall.
But never for this, never for this,
Was thy being lent.
Like his merriment.