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RODS AND KISSES.
LL blessings ask a blessed mood;
The garnish here is more than meat; Happy who takes sweet gratitude;
Next best, though bitter, is regret.
'Tis well if, on the tempest's gloom,
You see the covenant of God;
THESE blessed passing pleasures !
We need not let them waste,
Behind us in our haste.
Where earth's deep shadows fall ;
That we shall want them all.
Amid the old sad story
Of human shame and sin,
We ought to let them in.
And oh, when brought before us
Where heart and soul can see, How mighty to restore us
Love's little signs may be.
A bird, a tree, a flower,
A creature just as frail, Will take us in His power
To Him within the veil; Will come, if He has bidden,
Amidst the darkening fight, And leave us safely hidden
Behind a shield of light.
Perhaps his angels see us
Disquieted in vain ;
From some ensnaring pain ;
Who sees our nature through The good that in his pleasure
A passing joy may do.
If but for one bright minute
Through gathering clouds it break, There is a token in it
That He would have us take. And, his least sign obeying,
No wealth our hearts shall miss, Even when we hear Him saying
“See greater things than this !'
For He, the dull ear gaining,
Meeting the dim weak sight,
To bear the perfect light.
We in one sure belief
ANNA LÆTITIA WARING
'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, saith the Lord.'
God said, “Let there be light.'
Instead came dawning bright.
I bared my head to meet the smiter's stroke;
There came sweet dropping oil.
Said gently, 'Cease thy toil.'
I looked for evil, stern of face and pale ;
Came good, too fair to tell.
SARAH WILLIAMS. MUSIC.
As the breezes blow through a tree;
Like moons on a tremulous sea.
New passions are wakened within me,
New passions that have not a name; Dim truths that I knew but as phantoms
Stand up clear and bright in the flame.
And my soul is possessed with yearnings
life broaden and swell; And I hear strange things that are soundless,
And I see the invisible.
Oh silence that clarion in mercy,
For it carries my soul away;
Like the leaves on an autumn day.
O exquisite tyranny! silence,
My soul slips from under my hand, And as if by instinct is fleeing
To a dread unvisited land.
Is it sound, or fragrance, or vision ?
Vocal light wavering down from above? Past prayer and past praise I am floating
Down the rapids of speechless love.
I strove, but the sweet sounds have conquered :
Within me the Past is awake;
The Future is clear as daybreak.
Now Past, Present, Future have mingled
A new sort of Present to make; And my life is all disembodied,
Without time, without space, without break.
But my soul seems floating for ever
In an orb of ravishing sounds, Through faint-falling echoes of heavens
'Mid beautiful earths without bounds.
Now sighing, as zephyrs in summer,
The concords glide in like a stream, With a sound that is almost a silence,
Or the soundless sounds in a dream.
Then oft, when the music is faintest,
My soul has a storm in its bowers, Like the thunder among the mountains,
Like the wind in the abbey towers.
There are sounds, like flakes of snow falling
In their silent and eddying rings; We tremble,--they touch us so lightly,
Like the feathers from angels' wings.