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I praise thee while my days go on;
I love thee while my days go on;
Through dark and dearth, through fire and frost,
With emptied arms and treasure lost.
I thank thee while my days go on.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

TWaiting by the Gate.

Beside a massive gateway built up in years gone by,
Upon whose top the clouds in eternal shadow lie,
While streams the evening sunshine on quiet wood and lea,
I stand and calmly wait till the hinges turn for me.

The tree-tops faintly rustle beneath the breeze's flight,
A soft and soothing sound, yet it whispers of the night;
I hear the wood-thrush piping one mellow descant more,
And scent the flowers that blow when the heat of day is o’er.

Behold, the portals open, and o'er the threshold, now,
There steps a weary one with a pale and furrowed brow;
His count of years is full, his allotted task is wrought;
He passes to his rest from a place that needs him not.

In sadness then I ponder how quickly fleets the hour
Of human strength and action, man's courage and his power.
I muse while still the wood-thrush sings down the golden day,
And as I look and listen the sadness wears away.

Again the hinges turn, and a youth, departing, throws
A look of longing backward, and sorrowfully goes;
A blooming maid, unbinding the roses from her hair,
Moves mournfully away from amid the young and fair.

() glory of our race that so suddenly decays ! () crimson flush of morning that darkens as we gaze ! O breath of summer blossoms that on the restless air Scatters a moment's sweetness, and Alies we know not where!

I grieve for life's bright promise, just shown and then withdrawn;
But still the sun shines round me : the evening bird sings on,
And I again am soothed, and, beside the ancient gate,
In the soft evening sunlight, I calmly stand and wait.
Once more the gates are opened; an infant group go out,
The sweet smile quenched forever, and stilled the sprightly shout.
O frail, frail tree of Life, that upon the greensward strows
Its fair young buds unopened, with every wind that blows !
So come from every region, so enter, side by side,
The strong and faint of spirit, the meek and men of pride.
Steps of earth's great and mighty, between those pillars gray,
And prints of little feet, mark the dust along the way.
And some approach the threshold whose looks are blank with fear,
And some whose temples brighten with joy in drawing near,
As if they saw dear faces, and caught the gracious eye
Of him, the Sinless Teacher, who came for us to die.

I mark the joy, the terror ; yet these, within my heart,
Can neither wake the dread nor the longing to depart;
And, in the sunshine streaming on quiet wood and ea,
I calmly stand and wait till the hinges turn for me.


Take them, O Death! and bear away

Whatever thou canst call thine own!
Thine image, stamped upon this clay,

Doth give thee that, but that alone!

Take them, O Grave ! and let them lie

Folded upon thy narrow shelves,
As garments by the soul laid by,

And precious only to ourselves !

Take them, () great Eternity!

Our little life is but a gust
That bends the branches of thy tree,

And trails its blossoms in the dust!


Dropping Down the River.

Dropping down the troubled river,

To the tranquil, tranquil shore; Dropping down the misty river, Time's willow-shaded river,

To the spring embosomed shore;
Where the sweet light shineth ever,

And the sun goes down no more;
O wondrous, wondrous shore !

Dropping down the winding river,

To the wide and welcome sea; Dropping down the narrow river, Man's weary, wayward river,

To the blue and ample sea;
Where no tempest wrecketh ever,

Where the sky is fair and free;
O joyous, joyous sea!

Dropping down the noisy river,

To our peaceful, peaceful home; Dropping down the turbid river, Earth’s bustling, crowded river,

To our gentle, gentle home:
Where the rough roar riseth never,

And the vexings cannot come,
O loved and longed-for home!

Droppirg down the rapid river,

To the dear and deathless land; Dropping down the well-known river, Life's swoln and rushing river

To the resurrection-land;
Where the living live forever,

And the dead have joined the band,
In that fair and blessed land !

Horatius Bonar.

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The Charmer.
We need some charmer, for our hearts are sore

With longing for the things that may not be;
Faint for the friends that shall return no more ;

Dark with distrust, or wrung with agony.

“ What is this life ? and what to us is death?

Whence came we? whither go? and where are those Who, in a moment stricken from our side,

Passed to that land of shadow and repose?

“And are they dust? and dust must we become ?

Or are they living in some unknown clime ?
Shall we regain them in that far-off home,

And live anew beyond the waves of time?”

So spake the youth of Athens, weeping round,

When Socrates lay calmly down to die ;
So spake the sage, prophetic of the hour

When earth’s fair morning-star should rise on high.

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They found him not, those youths of soul divine,

Long seeking, wandering, watching on life's shore -
Reasoning, aspiring, yearning for the light,

Death came and found them — doubting as before.

But years passed on; and lo! the Charmer came

Pure, simple, sweet, as comes the silver dew;
And the world knew him not — he walked alone,

Encircled only by his trusting few.

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“Let not your heart be troubled," then he said;

* My Father's house hath mansions large and fair; I go before you to prepare your place;

'I will return to take you with me there.”

And since that hour the awful foe is charmed,

And life and death are glorified and fair.
Whither he went we know — the way we know
And with firm step press on to meet him there.

H. B. Stowe.

A German Funeral Mymn. "Here we have no continuing city, but we seek one to come.-- HEB. xiii., 14.

Come forth! Come on! with solemn song!
The road is short, the rest is long.
The Lord brought here, he calls away,

Make no delay,
This home was for a passing day.

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