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Doth God exact day labour, light denied ?' I fondly ask: but Patience, to prevent That murmur, soon replies, ‘God doth not need Either man's work, or his own gifts; who best Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best; his state Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed, And post o'er land and ocean without rest :They also serve who only stand and wait.'
MILTON! thou should’st be living at this hour :
England hath need of thee: she is a fen Of stagnant waters; altar, sword, and pen, Fireside, the heroic wealth of hall and bower, Have forfeited their ancient English dower Of inward happiness. We are selfish men : Oh raise us up, return to us again, And give us manners, virtue, freedom, power. Thy soul was like a star, and dwelt apart : Thou hadst a voice whose sound was like the sea : Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free, So didst thou travel on life's common way, In cheerful godliness; and yet thy heart The lowliest duties on herself did lay.
NOT MADE IN VAIN.
LET me not deem that I was made in vain,
Or that my being was an accident
What I am, and what I ought to be,
And a look of passionate desire
“Ah, once more,' I cried, 'ye stars, ye waters,
From the intense, clear, star-sown vault of heaven,
'Bounded by themselves and unregardful
O air-born voice ! long since, severely clear
E cannot kindle when we will
The fire which in the heart resides, The spirit bloweth and is still,
In mystery our soul abides,
With aching hands and bleeding feet
We dig and heap, lay stone on stone; We bear the burden and the heat
Of the long day, and wish 'twere done. Not till the hours of light return All we have built do we discern.
Then, when the clouds are off the soul,
When thou dost bask in Nature's eye, Ask how she viewed thy self-control,
Thy struggling tasked moralityNature, whose free, light, cheerful air, Oft made thee, in thy gloom, despair.
And she, whose censure thou dost dread,
Whose eye thou wast afraid to seek, See, on her face a glow is spread,
A strong emotion on her cheek! "Ah, child !' she cries, that strife divineWhence was it, for it is not mine?
*There is no effort on my brow
I do not strive, I do not weep;
In joy, and, when I will, I sleep.
'I knew not yet the gauge of time,
Nor wore the manacles of space;
I saw it in some other place.
NE feast, of holy days the crest,
I, though no churchman, love to keep, All-Saints,—the unknown good that rest
In God's still memory folded deep. The bravely dumb that did their deed,
And scorned to blot it with a name, Men of the plain heroic breed,
That loved Heaven's silence more than fame.
Such lived not in the past alone,
But thread to-day the unheeding street, And stairs to Sin and Famine known
Sing with the welcome of their feet;