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The blessing of her quiet life

Fell on us like the dew;
And good thoughts, where her footsteps pressed,

Like fairy blossoms grew.
There seems a shadow on the day,

Her smile no longer cheers;
A dimness on the stars of night,

Like eyes that look through tears.

Alone unto our Father's will

One thought hath reconciled : That He whose love exceedeth ours

Hath taken home his child.

Fold her, O Father, in thine arms,

And let her henceforth be
A messenger of love between

Our human hearts and thee.

Still let her mild rebuking stand

Between us and the wrong,
And her dear memory serve to make

Our faith in goodness strong.
And grant that she who, trembling, here

Distrusted all her powers,
May welcome to her holier home
The well-beloved of ours.

John G. Whittier.

The Angel of Patience.
TO WEARY hearts, to mourning homes,
God's meekest Angel gently comes :
No power has he to banish pain,
Or give us back our lost again ;
And yet in tenderest love our dear
And heavenly Father sends him here.
There's quiet in that Angel's glance ;
There's rest in his still countenance !
He mocks no grief with idle cheer,
Nor wounds with words the mourner's ear;
But ills and woes he may not cure
He kindly trains us to endure.
Angel of Patience, sent to calm
Our feverish brows with cooling palm;
To lay the storms of hope and fear,
And reconcile life's smile and tear;
The throbs of wounded pride to still,
And make our own our Father's will!
O thou who mournest on thy way,
With longings for the close of day!
He walks with thee, that Angel kind,
And gently whispers, “Be resigned :
Bear up, bear on, the end shall tell
The dear Lord ordereth all things well!

John G. Whittier.

After the Burial.
Yes, faith is a goodly anchor :
When skies are sweet as a psalm,
At the bows it lolls so stalwart,
In bluff, broad-shouldered calm.

But after the shipwreck, tell me
What help in its iron thews
Still true to the broken hawser
Deep down among sea-weed and ooze ?

Then better one spar of memory,
One broken plank of the Past,
That our human heart may cling to,
Though hopeless of shore at last.

To the spirit its splendid conjectures ;
To the flesh its sweet despair;
Its tears o'er the time-worn locket
With its anguish of deathless hair !

Immortal ? I feel it, I know it:
Who doubts it of such as she?
But that is the pang's very secret, -
Immortal away from me!

Console if you will; I can bear it:
'Tis a well-meant alms of breath;
But not all the preaching since Adam
Hath made Death other than Death.

It is pagan: but wait till you feel it, — That jar of our earth, that dull shock, When the ploughshare of deeper passion Tears down to our primitive rock.

Communion in spirit ? Forgive me;
But I, who am earthly and weak,
Would give all my income for dreamland,
For a touch of her hand on my cheek.

That little shoe in the corner,
So worn and wrinkled and brown,
With its emptiness confutes you,
And argues your wisdom down.


To a Friend after the Loss of a Child.

AFTER our child's untroubled breath

Up to the Father took its way,
And on our home the shade of death

Like a long twilight haunting lay;

And friends came round, with us to weep

Her little spirit's swift remove,The story of the Alpine sheep

Was told to us by one we love.

They, in the valley's sheltering care,

Soon crop the meadow's tender prime, And when the sod grows brown and bare

The shepherd strives to make them climb

To airy shelves of pasture green,,

That hang along the mountain's side, Where grass and flowers together lean,

And down through mists the sunbeams slide.

But nought can tempt the timid things

The steep and rugged path to try, Though sweet the shepherd calls and sings,

And seared below the pastures lie,

Till in his arms their lambs he takes,

Along the dizzy verge to go,
Then, heedless of the rifts and breaks,

They follow on, o'er rock and snow.

And in those pastures, lifted fair,

More dewy. soft than lowland mead, The shepherd drops his tender care,

And sheep and lambs together feed.

This parable, by nature breathed,

Blew on me as the south wind free
O'er frozen brooks, that flow unsheathed

From icy thraldom to the sea.

A blissful vision, through the night,

Would all my happy senses sway,
Of the good shepherd on the height,

Or climbing up the stony way,
Holding our little lamb asleep,

While, like the murmur of the sea,
Sounded that voice along the deep,

Saying, “Arise, and follow me!”

Maria Lowell.

The Old Man's Funeral. I saw an aged man upon his bier;

His hair was thin and white, and on his brow
A record of the cares of many a year, -

Cares that were ended and forgotten now.
And there was sadness round, and faces bowed,
And woman's tears fell fast, and children wailed aloud.

Then rose another hoary man, and said,

In faltering accents to that weeping train:
“Why mourn ye that our aged friend is dead ?

Ye are not sad to see the gathered grain,
Nor when their mellow fruit the orchards cast,
Nor when the yellow woods let fall the ripened mast.
“Ye sigh not when the sun, his course fulfilled, -

His glorious course, rejoicing earth and sky,–
In the soft evening, when the winds are stilled,

Sinks where his islands of refreshment lie, And leaves the smile of his departure spread O’er the warm-colored heaven and ruddy mountain-head. “Why weep ye then for him, who, having won

The bound of man's appointed years, at last,
Life's blessings all enjoyed, life’s labors done,

Serenely to his final rest has passed ;
While the soft memory of his virtues yet
Lingers, like twilight hues when the bright sun is set ?

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