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I've seen a land unmoulded with great pain, But yet may live to see't made up again. I've seen it shaken, rent, and soak'd in blood, But out of troubles ye may see much good. These are no old wives' tales, but this is truth. We old men love to tell, what's done in youth. There I shall rest till heavens shall be no more; And when this flesh shall rot and be consum'd, This body, by this soul, shall be assum'd; And I shall see with these same very eyes My strong Redeemer coming in the skies.

Remember me when no more day by day You tell me of our future that you planned: Only remember me; you understand It will be late to counsel then or pray. Yet if you should forget me for a while And afterwards remember, do not grieve: For if the darkness and corruption leave A vestige of the thoughts that once I had, Better by far you should forget and smile Than that you should remember and be sad.

Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back. I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. Backward, turn backward, O Time, in your flight, Make me a child again just for tonight! Backward, flow backward, O tide of the years!

I am so weary of toil and of tears,— Toil without recompense, tears all in vain,— Take them, and give me my childhood again! I have grown weary of dust and decay,— Weary of flinging my soul-wealth away; Weary of sowing for others to reap;— Rock me to sleep, mother — rock me to sleep! Tired of the hollow, the base, the untrue, Mother, O mother, my heart calls for you! Many a summer the grass has grown green, Blossomed and faded, our faces between: Yet, with strong yearning and passionate pain, Long I tonight for your presence again.

Come from the silence so long and so deep;— Rock me to sleep, mother, — rock me to sleep! Over my heart, in the days that are flown, No love like mother-love ever has shone; No other worship abides and endures,— Faithful, unselfish, and patient like yours: None like a mother can charm away pain From the sick soul and the world-weary brain. Come, let your brown hair, just lighted with gold, Fall on your shoulders again as of old; Let it drop over my forehead tonight, Shading my faint eyes away from the light; For with its sunny-edged shadows once more Haply will throng the sweet visions of yore; Lovingly, softly, its bright billows sweep;— Rock me to sleep, mother, — rock me to sleep!

Clasped to your heart in a loving embrace, With your light lashes just sweeping my face, Never hereafter to wake or to weep;— Rock me to sleep, mother, — rock me to sleep! When I am dead, my dearest, Sing no sad songs for me; Plant thou no roses at my head, Nor shady cypress tree: Be the green grass above me With showers and dewdrops wet; And if thou wilt, remember, And if thou wilt, forget. I shall not see the shadows, I shall not feel the rain; I shall not hear the nightingale Sing on, as if in pain: And dreaming through the twilight That doth not rise nor set, Haply I may remember, And haply may forget.

Orion swung southward aslant Where the starved Egdon pine-trees had thinned, The Pleiads aloft seemed to pant With the heather that twitched in the wind; But he looked on indifferent to sights such as these, Unswayed by love, friendship, home joy or home sorrow, And wondered to what he would march on the morrow. The crazed household clock with its whirr Rang midnight within as he stood, He heard the low sighing of her Who had striven from his birth for his good; But he still only asked the spring starlight, the breeze, What great thing or small thing his history would borrow.

From that Game with Death he would play on the morrow. When the heath wore the robe of late summer, And the fuchsia-bells, hot in the sun, Hung red by the door, a quick comer Brought tidings that marching was done For him who had joined in that game overseas Where Death stood to win; though his memory would borrow A brightness therefrom not to die on the morrow. The soldier of a life-long fight, Still fighting, went to die. He toiled to rouse us from our sleep, And now he takes his rest, And we—it is not ours to weep, But follow his behest.

Smell you the buckwheat where the bees were lately buzzing? Above all, lo, the sky so calm, so transparent after the rain, and with wondrous clouds, Below too, all calm, all vital and beautiful, and the farm prospers well. Fast as she can she hurries, something ominous, her steps trembling, She does not tarry to smooth her hair nor adjust her cap. All swims before her eyes, flashes with black, she catches the main words only, Sentences broken, gunshot wound in the breast, cavalry skirmish, taken to hospital, At present low, but will soon be better.

Ah now the single figure to me, Amid all teeming and wealthy Ohio with all its cities and farms, Sickly white in the face and dull in the head, very faint, By the jamb of a door leans. Alas poor boy, he will never be better, nor may-be needs to be better, that brave and simple soul, While they stand at home at the door he is dead already, The only son is dead.

Dark hills at evening in the west, Where sunset hovers like a sound Of golden horns that sang to rest Old bones of warriors under ground, Far now from all the bannered ways Where flash the legions of the sun, You fade—as if the last of days Were fading, and all wars were done.

In the great hour of destiny they stand, Each with his feuds, and jealousies, and sorrows. Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win Some flaming, fatal climax with their lives. Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin They think of firelit homes, clean beds, and wives. I see them in foul dug-outs, gnawed by rats, And in the ruined trenches, lashed with rain, Dreaming of things they did with balls and bats, And mocked by hopeless longing to regain Bank-holidays, and picture shows, and spats, And going to the office in the train.

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge, Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs And towards our distant rest began to trudge.

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Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind; Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind. Quick, boys! Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light, As under a green sea, I saw him drowning. In all my dreams, before my helpless sight, He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning. If in some smothering dreams you too could pace Behind the wagon that we flung him in, And watch the white eyes writhing in his face, His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin; If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs, Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,— My friend, you would not tell with such high zest To children ardent for some desperate glory, The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori.

Home they brought her warrior dead: She nor swooned, nor uttered cry; All her maidens, watching, said, "She must weep or she will die. Then they praised him, soft and low, Called him worthy to be loved, Truest friend and noblest foe; Yet she neither spoke nor moved. Stole a maiden from her place, Lightly to the warrior stept, Took the face-cloth from the face; Yet she neither moved nor wept. Rose a nurse of ninety years, Set his child upon her knee,— Like summer tempest came her tears, "Sweet my child, I live for thee.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place; and in the sky The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below. We are the Dead. Short days ago We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, Loved and were loved, and now we lie In Flanders fields. Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw The torch; be yours to hold it high. If ye break faith with us who die We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields. When you sit at the feast, And are wanting a great song for Italy free, Let none look at me!

Yet I was a poetess only last year, And good at my art, for a woman, men said. But this woman, this, who is agonized here, The east sea and west sea rhyme on in her head Forever instead. What art can a woman be good at? O, vain! What art is she good at, but hurting her breast With the milk teeth of babes, and a smile at the pain? Ah, boys, how you hurt! What art's for a woman! To hold on her knees Both darlings! To dream and to dote. To teach them It stings there.

I made them indeed Speak plain the word "country," I taught them, no doubt, That a country's a thing men should die for at need. I prated of liberty, rights, and about The tyrant turned out. And when their eyes flashed O my beautiful eyes! I exulted! At first happy news came, in gay letters moiled With my kisses, of camp-life and glory, and how They both loved me, and soon, coming home to be spoiled, In return would fan off every fly from my brow With their green laurel-bough.

Then was triumph at Turin. I bore it;—friends soothed me: my grief looked sublime As the ransom of Italy. One boy remained To be leant on and walked with, recalling the time When the first grew immortal, while both of us strained To the height he had gained. And letters still came,—shorter, sadder, more strong, Writ now but in one hand. One loved me for two My Nanni would add "he was safe, and aware Of a presence that turned off the balls Tell his mother.

Funeral Poems for Loved Ones

You think Guido forgot? Are souls straight so happy that, dizzy with heaven, They drop earth's affections, conceive not of woe? I think not. Themselves were too lately forgiven Through that love and sorrow which reconciled so The above and below. O Christ of the seven wounds, who look'dst through the dark To the face of thy mother! How we common mothers stand desolate, mark, Whose sons, not being Christs, die with eyes turned away, And no last word to say! Both boys dead! We all Have been patriots, yet each house must always keep one.

And when Italy's made, for what end is it done If we have not a son? Ah, ah, ah! When the fair wicked queen sits no more at her sport Of the fire-balls of death crashing souls out of men? When your guns at Cavalli with final retort Have cut the game short,—. When Venice and Rome keep their new jubilee, When your flag takes all heaven for its white, green, and red, When you have your country from mountain to sea, When King Victor has Italy's crown on his head, And I have my dead,.

What then? Do not mock me. Ah, ring your bells low, And burn your lights faintly! Forgive me. Some women bear children in strength, And bite back the cry of their pain in self-scorn. But the birth-pangs of nations will wring us at length Into such wail as this!

Oh, in youth the dawn's a rose, Dusk's an amethyst, All the roads from dusk to dawn Gay they wind and twist; The old road to Paradise Easy it is missed! But out on the wet battlefields, Few the roadways wind, One to grief, one to death No road that's kind— The old road to Paradise Plain it is to find!

Martin in his Colonel's cloak, Joan in her mail, David with his crown and sword— None there be that fail— Down the road to Paradise Stand to greet and hail! Where the dark's a terror-thing, Morn a hope doubt-tossed. Where the lads lie thinking long Out in rain and frost, There they find their God again, Long ago they lost:. Where the night comes cruelly, Where the hurt men moan, Where the crushed forgotten ones Whisper prayers alone, Christ along the battlefields Comes to lead His own:.

Souls that would have withered soon In the hot world's glare, Blown and gone like shriveled things, Dusty on the air, Rank on rank they follow Him, Young and strong and fair! Dim, gradual thinning of the shapeless gloom Shudders to drizzling daybreak that reveals Disconsolate men who stamp their sodden boots And turn dulled, sunken faces to the sky Haggard and hopeless. They, who have beaten down The stale despair of night, must now renew Their desolation in the truce of dawn, Murdering the livid hours that grope for peace. Yet these, who cling to life with stubborn hands, Can grin through storms of death and find a gap In the clawed, cruel tangles of his defence.

They march from safety, and the bird-sung joy Of grass-green thickets, to the land where all Is ruin, and nothing blossoms but the sky That hastens over them where they endure Sad, smoking, flat horizons, reeking woods, And foundered trench-lines volleying doom for doom. O my brave brown companions, when your souls Flock silently away, and the eyeless dead Shame the wild beast of battle on the ridge, Death will stand grieving in that field of war Since your unvanquished hardihood is spent.

And through some mooned Valhalla there will pass Battalions and battalions, scarred from hell; The unreturning army that was youth; The legions who have suffered and are dust. The law of the land might have watched for him, Or a sweetheart, wife, or mother; But they bared their heads, and their eyes were dim, For he might have been a brother! And think, this heart, all evil shed away, A pulse in the eternal mind, no less Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given; Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day; And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness, In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.

There will come soft rains and the smell of the ground, And swallows circling with their shimmering sound; And frogs in the pools singing at night, And wild plum-trees in tremulous white; Robins will wear their feathery fire Whistling their whims on a low fence-wire; And not one will know of the war, not one Will care at last when it is done. Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree If mankind perished utterly; And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn, Would scarcely know that we were gone.

Do not weep, maiden, for war is kind. Because your lover threw wild hands toward the sky And the affrighted steed ran on alone, Do not weep. War is kind. Hoarse, booming drums of the regiment, Little souls who thirst for fight, These men were born to drill and die. The unexplained glory flies above them, Great is the battle-god, great, and his kingdom— A field where a thousand corpses lie. Do not weep, babe, for war is kind. Because your father tumbled in the yellow trenches, Raged at his breast, gulped and died, Do not weep.

Swift, blazing flag of the regiment, Eagle with crest of red and gold, These men were born to drill and die. Point for them the virtue of slaughter, Make plain to them the excellence of killing And a field where a thousand corpses lie. Mother whose heart hung humble as a button On the bright splendid shroud of your son, Do not weep. Ae fond kiss, and then we sever; Ae fareweel, and then forever! Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee, Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.

Who shall say that Fortune grieves him, While the star of hope she leaves him? Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me; Dark despair around benights me. I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy, Naething could resist my Nancy; But to see her was to love her; Love but her, and love forever. Had we never lov'd sae kindly, Had we never lov'd sae blindly, Never met—or never parted— We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Fare thee weel, thou first and fairest! Fare thee weel, thou best and dearest! Thine be ilka joy and treasure, Peace. Ae fond kiss, and then we sever; Ae fareweel, alas, forever! Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee, Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee! It was many and many a year ago, In a kingdom by the sea, That a maiden there lived whom you may know By the name of Annabel Lee; And this maiden she lived with no other thought Than to love and be loved by me.

And this was the reason that, long ago, In this kingdom by the sea, A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling My beautiful Annabel Lee; So that her highborn kinsmen came And bore her away from me, To shut her up in a sepulchre In this kingdom by the sea. The angels, not half so happy in Heaven, Went envying her and me— Yes!

But our love it was stronger by far than the love Of those who were older than we— Of many far wiser than we— And neither the angels in Heaven above Nor the demons down under the sea Can ever dissever my soul from the soul Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;. For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride, In her sepulchre there by the sea— In her tomb by the sounding sea.

Down, down, Ellen, my little one, Climbing so tenderly up to my knee; Why should you add to the thoughts that are taunting me, Dreams of your mother's arms clinging to me? Cease, cease, Ellen, my little one, Warbling so fairily close to my ear; Why should you choose, of all songs that are haunting me, This that I made for your mother to hear? Hush, hush, Ellen, my little one, Wailing so wearily under the stars; Why should I think of her tears, that might light to me Love that had made life, and sorrow that mars?

Sleep, sleep, Ellen, my little one! Is she not like her whenever she stirs? Has she not eyes that will soon be as bright to me, Lips that will some day be honeyed like hers? Yes, yes, Ellen, my little one. Though her white bosom is stilled in the grave, Something more white than her bosom is spared to me,— Something to cling to and something to crave.

Love, love, Ellen, my little one! Love indestructible, love undefiled, Love through all deeps of her spirit lies bared to me, Oft as I look on the face of her child. Curst be the heart that thought the thought, And curst the hand that fired the shot, When in my arms burd Helen dropt, And died to succor me! O think na but my heart was sair When my Love dropt down and spak nae mair! I laid her down wi' meikle care On fair Kirconnell lea.

As I went down the water-side, None but my foe to be my guide, None but my foe to be my guide, On fair Kirconnell lea;. O Helen fair, beyond compare! I'll make a garland of thy hair Shall bind my heart for evermair Until the day I die. O that I were where Helen lies! Night and day on me she cries; Out of my bed she bids me rise, Says, "Haste and come to me! O Helen fair! O Helen chaste! I wish my grave were growing green, A winding-sheet drawn ower my een, And I in Helen's arms lying, On fair Kirconnell lea.

He loved three things, alive: White peacocks, songs at eve, And antique maps of America. Hated when children cried, And raspberry jam with tea, And feminine hysteria. Tears for my lady dead— Heliodore!

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Sad are the songs we sing, Tears that we shed, Empty the gifts we bring Gifts to the dead! Go, tears, and go, lament, Fare from her tomb, Wend where my lady went Down through the gloom! Ah, for my flower, my love, Hades hath taken I Ah, for the dust above Scattered and shaken! Mother of blade and grass, Earth, in thy breast Lull her that gentlest was Gently to rest! I SAID—Then, dearest, since 'tis so, Since now at length my fate I know, Since nothing all my love avails, Since all, my life seem'd meant for, fails, Since this was written and needs must be— My whole heart rises up to bless Your name in pride and thankfulness!

Take back the hope you gave,—I claim Only a memory of the same, —And this beside, if you will not blame; Your leave for one more last ride with me. My mistress bent that brow of hers, Those deep dark eyes where pride demurs When pity would be softening through, Fix'd me a breathing-while or two With life or death in the balance: right! The blood replenish'd me again; My last thought was at least not vain: I and my mistress, side by side Shall be together, breathe and ride, So, one day more am I deified.

Who knows but the world may end to-night? Thus lay she a moment on my breast. Then we began to ride. My soul Smooth'd itself out, a long-cramp'd scroll Freshening and fluttering in the wind. Past hopes already lay behind. What need to strive with a life awry? Might she have loved me? Where had I been now if the worst befell? And here we are riding, she and I. Fail I alone, in words and deeds? Why, all men strive and who succeeds?

We rode; it seem'd my spirit flew, Saw other regions, cities new, As the world rush'd by on either side. I thought,—All labour, yet no less Bear up beneath their unsuccess. Look at the end of work, contrast The petty done, the undone vast, This present of theirs with the hopeful past! I hoped she would love me; here we ride. What hand and brain went ever pair'd? What heart alike conceived and dared?

What act proved all its thought had been? What will but felt the fleshly screen? We ride and I see her bosom heave. There 's many a crown for who can reach. Ten lines, a statesman's life in each! The flag stuck on a heap of bones, A soldier's doing! They scratch his name on the Abbey-stones. My riding is better, by their leave. What does it all mean, poet? Well, Your brains beat into rhythm, you tell What we felt only; you express'd You hold things beautiful the best, And pace them in rhyme so, side by side.

Are you—poor, sick, old ere your time— Nearer one whit your own sublime Than we who never have turn'd a rhyme? Sing, riding 's a joy! For me, I ride. And you, great sculptor—so, you gave A score of years to Art, her slave, And that 's your Venus, whence we turn To yonder girl that fords the burn! You acquiesce, and shall I repine? What, man of music, you grown gray With notes and nothing else to say, Is this your sole praise from a friend, 'Greatly his opera's strains intend, But in music we know how fashions end!

Who knows what 's fit for us? Had fate Proposed bliss here should sublimate My being—had I sign'd the bond— Still one must lead some life beyond, Have a bliss to die with, dim-descried. This foot once planted on the goal, This glory-garland round my soul, Could I descry such? Try and test! I sink back shuddering from the quest. Earth being so good, would heaven seem best? Now, heaven and she are beyond this ride. And yet—she has not spoke so long! What if heaven be that, fair and strong At life's best, with our eyes upturn'd Whither life's flower is first discern'd, We, fix'd so, ever should so abide?

What if we still ride on, we two With life for ever old yet new, Changed not in kind but in degree, The instant made eternity,— And heaven just prove that I and she Ride, ride together, for ever ride? In losing you I lost my sun and moon And all the stars that blessed my lonely night. I lost the zest of living, the sweet sense Expectant of your step, your smile, your kiss; I lost all hope and fear and keen suspense For this cold calm, sans agony, sans bliss.

I lost the master word, dear love, the clue That threads the maze of life when I lost you. Thou lingering star, with lessening ray, That lov'st to greet the early morn, Again thou usher'st in the day My Mary from my soul was torn. O Mary! Where is thy place of blissful rest? See'st thou thy lover lowly laid? Hear'st thou the groans that rend his breast?

That sacred hour can I forget,— Can I forget the hallowed grove, Where by the winding Ayr we met To live one day of parting love? Eternity will not efface Those records dear of transports past; Thy image at our last embrace; Ah! Still o'er these scenes my memory wakes, And fondly broods with miser care! Time but the impression stronger makes, As streams their channels deeper wear. My Mary! O sing unto my roundelay!

O, drop the briny tear with me! Dance no more at holiday; Like a running river be. My love is dead, Gone to his death-bed, All under the willow-tree. Black his hair as the winter night, White his neck as the summer snow, Ruddy his face as the morning light; Cold he lies in the grave below. Sweet his tongue as the throstle's note; Quick in dance as thought can be; Deft his tabor, cudgel stout; O, lie lies by the willow-tree!

Here, upon my true-love's grave Shall the barren flowers be laid, Nor one holy saint to save All the coldness of a maid. With my hands I'll bind the briers Round his holy corse to gre; Ouphant fairy, light your fires; Here my body still shall be. Come, with acorn-cup and thorn, Drain my heart's blood away; Life and all its good I scorn, Dance by night, or feast by day.

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Water-witches, crowned with reytes, Bear me to your lethal tide. I die! I come! Thus the damsel spake, and died. Oh that 't were possible, After long grief and pain, To find the arms of my true love Round me once again! When I was wont to meet her In the silent woody places Of the laud that gave me birth, We stood tranced in long embraces Mixt with kisses sweeter, sweeter Than anything on earth.

A shadow flits before me, Not thou, but like to thee; Ah Christ, that it were possible For one short hour to see The souls we loved, that they might tell us What and where they be! It leads me forth at evening, It lightly winds and steals In a cold white robe before me, When all my spirit reels At the shouts, the leagues of lights, And the roaring of the wheels.

Half the night I waste in sighs, Half in dreams I sorrow after The delight of early skies; In a wakeful doze I sorrow For the hand, the lips, the eyes— For the meeting of the morrow, The delight of happy laughter, The delight of low replies. In a moment we shall meet; She is singing in the meadow, And the rivulet at her feet Ripples on in light and shadow To the ballad that she sings. Do I hear her sing as of old, My bird with the shining head, My own dove with the tender eye? But there rings on a sudden a passionate cry— There is some one dying or dead; And a sullen thunder is rolled; For a tumult shakes the city, And I wake—my dream is fled; In the shuddering dawn, behold, Without knowledge, without pity, By the curtains of my bed That abiding phantom cold!

Get thee hence, nor come again! Mix not memory with doubt, Pass, thou deathlike type of pain, Pass and cease to move about! Then I rise; the eave-drops fall, And the yellow vapors choke The great city sounding wide; The day comes—a dull red ball Wrapt in drifts of lurid smoke On the misty river-tide. Through the hubbub of the market I steal, a wasted frame; It crosses here, it crosses there, Through all that crowd confused and loud The shadow still the same; And on my heavy eyelids My anguish hangs like shame.

Alas for her that met me, That heard me softly call, Came glimmering through the laurels At the quiet evenfall, In the garden by the turrets Of the old manorial hall! Would the happy spirit descend From the realms of light and song, In the chamber or the street. As she looks among the blest, Should I fear to greet my friend Or to say "Forgive the wrong," Or to ask her, "Take me, sweet, To the regions of thy rest? But the broad light glares and beats, And the shadow flits and Meets And will not let me be; And I loathe the squares and streets, And the faces that one meets, Hearts with no love for me; Always I long to creep Into some still cavern deep, There to weep, and weep, and weep My whole soul out to thee.

And thou art dead, as young and fair As aught of mortal birth; And form so soft, and charms so rare, Too soon return'd to Earth! Though Earth receiv'd them in her bed, And o'er the spot the crowd may tread In carelessness or mirth, There is an eye which could not brook A moment on that grave to look.

I will not ask where thou liest low, Nor gaze upon the spot; There flowers or weeds at will may grow, So I behold them not: It is enough for me to prove That what I lov'd, and long must love, Like common earth can rot; To me there needs no stone to tell, 'T is Nothing that I lov'd so well. Yet did I love thee to the last As fervently as thou, Who didst not change through all the past, And canst not alter now. The love where Death has set his seal, Nor age can chill, nor rival steal, Nor falsehood disavow: And, what were worse, thou canst not see Or wrong, or change, or fault in me.

The better days of life were ours; The worst can be but mine: The sun that cheers, the storm that lowers, Shall never more be thine. The silence of that dreamless sleep I envy now too much to weep; Nor need I to repine That all those charms have pass'd away, I might have watch'd through long decay. The flower in ripen'd bloom unmatch'd Must fall the earliest prey; Though by no hand untimely snatch'd, The leaves must drop away: And yet it were a greater grief To watch it withering, leaf by leaf, Than see it pluck'd to-day; Since earthly eye but ill can bear To trace the change to foul from fair.

I know not if I could have borne To see thy beauties fade; The night that follow'd such a morn Had worn a deeper shade: Thy day without a cloud hath pass'd, And thou wert lovely to the last, Extinguish'd, not decay'd; As stars that shoot along the sky Shine brightest as they fall from high. As once I wept, if I could weep, My tears might well be shed, To think I was not near to keep One vigil o'er thy bed; To gaze, how fondly!

Yet how much less it were to gain, Though thou hast left me free, The loveliest things that still remain, Than thus remember thee! The all of thine that cannot die Through dark and dread Eternity Returns again to me, And more thy buried love endears Than aught except its living years. Could ye come back to me, Douglas, Douglas, In the old likeness that I knew, I would be so faithful, so loving, Douglas, Douglas, Douglas, tender and true.

Never a scornful word should grieve ye, I 'd smile on ye sweet as the angels do; Sweet as your smile on me shone ever, Douglas, Douglas, tender and true. Oh, to call back the days that are not! My eyes were blinded, your words were few: Do you know the truth now, up in heaven, Douglas, Douglas, tender and true? I never was worthy of you, Douglas; Not half worthy the like of you: Now all men beside seem to me like shadows— I love you, Douglas, tender and true.

Stretch out your hand to me, Douglas, Douglas, Drop forgiveness from heaven like dew; As I lay my heart on your dead heart, Douglas, Douglas, Douglas, tender and true! November glooms are barren beside the dusk of June. The summer flowers are faded, the summer thoughts are sere. The song we sang rings hollow, and heavy runs the tune. Glad ways and words remembered would shame the wretched year. If yet we walk together, we need not shun the moon. Sorrow is my own yard where the new grass flames as it has flamed often before but not with the cold fire that closes round me this year.

Thirtyfive years I lived with my husband. The plumtree is white today with masses of flowers. Masses of flowers load the cherry branches and color some bushes yellow and some red but the grief in my heart is stronger than they for though they were my joy formerly, today I notice them and turn away forgetting. Today my son told me that in the meadows, at the edge of the heavy woods in the distance, he saw trees of white flowers. I feel that I would like to go there and fall into those flowers and sink into the marsh near them. Last night I heard your voice, mother, The words you sang to me When I, a little barefoot boy, Knelt down against your knee.

And tears gushed from my heart, mother, And passed beyond its wall, But though the fountain reached my throat The drops refused to fall. Here lies A worthy matron of unspotted life, A loving mother and obedient wife, A friendly neighbor, pitiful to poor, Whom oft she fed, and clothed with her store; To servants wisely aweful, but yet kind, And as they did, so they reward did find: A true instructor of her family, The which she ordered with dexterity, The public meetings ever did frequent, And in her closest constant hours she spent; Religious in all her words and ways, Preparing still for death, till end of days: Of all her children, children lived to see, Then dying, left a blessed memory.

Your love was like moonlight turning harsh things to beauty, so that little wry souls reflecting each other obliquely as in cracked mirrors. You are less an image in my mind than a luster I see you in gleams pale as star-light on a gray wall. O say, amid this wilderness of life, What bosom would have throbbed like thine for me? Who would have smiled responsive? Who would have guarded, with a falcon-eye, Each trembling footstep or each sport of fear?

Who would have hung around my sleepless couch, And fanned, with anxious hand, my burning brow? Who would have fondly pressed my fevered lip, In all the agony of love and wo? O then, to thee, this rude and simple song, Which breathes of thankfulness and love for thee, To thee, my mother, shall this lay belong, Whose life is spent in toil and care for me.

My mother—my own mother, who died early, Was but the mother of myself; but you Are mother to the one I loved so dearly, And thus are dearer than the mother I knew By that infinity with which my wife Was dearer to my soul than its soul-life. And so because you love me, and because I love you, Mother, I have woven a wreath Of rhymes wherewith to crown your honored name: In you not fourscore years can dim the flame Of love, whose blessed glow transcends the laws Of time and change and mortal life and death. Her look I never can forget, I that held sobbing to her knees; The cherry-boughs above us met; I think I see Bathsheba yet Telling the bees.

Mysterious death! Bending beneath the weight of eighty years, Spent with the noble strife Of a victorious life, We watched her fading heavenward, through our tears. But ere the sense of loss our hearts had wrung, A miracle was wrought; And swift as happy thought She lived again,— brave, beautiful, and young. Age, pain, and sorrow dropped the veils they wore And showed the tender eyes Of angels in disguise, Whose discipline so patiently she bore.

The past years brought their harvest rich and fair; While memory and love, Together, fondly wove A golden garland for the silver hair. How could we mourn like those who are bereft, When every pang of grief Found balm for its relief In counting up the treasures she had left? Faith that withstood the shocks of toil and time; Hope that defied despair; Patience that conquered care; And loyalty, whose courage was sublime;. The great deep heart that was a home for all,— Just, eloquent, and strong In protest against wrong; Wide charity, that knew no sin, no fall;.

The spartan spirit that made life so grand, Mating poor daily needs With high, heroic deeds, That wrested happiness from Fate's hard hand. We thought to weep, but sing for joy instead, Full of the grateful peace That follows her release; For nothing but the weary dust lies dead. Oh, noble woman! Teaching us how to seek the highest goal, To earn the true success,— To live, to love, to bless,— And make death proud to take a royal soul.

Like Bunyan's pilgrim with his pack, Forth went the dreaming youth To seek, to find, and make his own Wisdom, virtue, and truth. Life was his book, and patiently He studied each hard page; By turns reformer, outcast, priest, Philosopher and sage. Christ was his Master, and he made His life a gospel sweet; Plato and Pythagoras in him Found a disciple meet. The noblest and best his friends, Faithful and fond, though few; Eager to listen, learn, and pay The love and honor due. Power and place, silver and gold, He neither asked nor sought; Only to serve his fellowmen, With heart and word and thought.

A pilgrim still, but in his pack No sins to frighten or oppress; But wisdom, morals, piety, To teach, to warn and bless. The world passed by, nor cared to take The treasure he could give; Apart he sat, content to wait And beautifully live; Unsaddened by long, lonely years Of want, neglect, and wrong, His soul to him a kingdom was, Steadfast, serene, and strong. Magnanimous and pure his life, Tranquil its happy end; Patience and peace his handmaids were, Death an immortal friend.

For him no monuments need rise, No laurels make his pall; The mem'ry of the good and wise Outshines, outlives them all. Within this tomb a patriot lies That was both pious, just and wise, To truth a shield, to right a wall, To sectaries a whip and maul, A magazine of history, A prizer of good company In manners pleasant and severe The good him loved, the bad did fear, And when his time with years was spent In some rejoiced, more did lament.

To my Maternal Grand-father on hearing his descent from Chippewa ancestors misrepresented. Rise bravest chief! The foes of thy line, With coward design, Have dared with black envy to garble the truth, And stain with a falsehood thy valorous youth. Can the sports of thy youth, or thy deeds ever fade? Can the warrior forget how sublimely you rose? Thy arm and thy yell, Once the tale could repel Which slander invented, and minions detail, And still shall thy actions refute the false tale.

Rest thou, noblest chief! Listen, children: Your father is dead. From his old coats I'll make you little jackets; I'll make you little trousers From his old pants. There'll be in his pockets Things he used to put there, Keys and pennies Covered with tobacco; Dan shall have the pennies To save in his bank; Anne shall have the keys To make a pretty noise with.

Life must go on, And the dead be forgotten; Life must go on, Though good men die; Anne, eat your breakfast; Dan, take your medicine; Life must go on; I forget just why. Only a dad with a tired face, Coming home from the daily race, Bringing little of gold or fame To show how well he has played the game; But glad in his heart that his own rejoice To see him come and to hear his voice. Only a dad with a brood of four, One of ten million men or more Plodding along in the daily strife, Bearing the whips and the scorns of life, With never a whimper of pain or hate, For the sake of those who at home await.

Only a dad, neither rich nor proud, Merely one of the surging crowd, Toiling, striving from day to day, Facing whatever may come his way, Silent whenever the harsh condemn, And bearing it all for the love of them. Only a dad but he gives his all, To smooth the way for his children small, Doing with courage stern and grim The deeds that his father did for him. This is the line that for him I pen: Only a dad, but the best of men.

Each day, when the glow of sunset Fades in the western sky, And the wee ones, tired of playing, Go tripping lightly by, I steal away from my husband, Asleep in his easy-chair, And watch from the open door-way Their faces fresh and fair. At home, where never a sorrow Shall dim their eyes with tears! Where the smile of God is on them Through all the summer years! I know,—yet my arms are empty, That fondly folded seven, And the mother heart within me Is almost starved for heaven. Sometimes, in the dusk of evening, I only shut my eyes, And the children are all about me, A vision from the skies: The babes whose dimpled fingers Lost the way to my breast, And the beautiful ones, the angels, Passed to the world of the blest.

With never a cloud upon them, I see their radiant brows; My boys that I gave to freedom,— The red sword sealed their vows! In a tangled Southern forest, Twin brothers bold and brave, They fell; and the flag they died for, Thank God! A breath, and the vision is lifted Away on wings of light, And again we two are together, All alone in the night. They tell me his mind is failing, But I smile at idle fears; He is only back with the children, In the dear and peaceful years. And still, as the summer sunset Fades away in the west, And the wee ones, tired of playing, Go trooping home to rest, My husband calls from his corner, "Say, love, have the children come?

Boys and girls that held her dear, Do your weeping now; All you loved of her lies here. Brought to earth the arrogant brow, And the withering tongue Chastened; do your weeping now. Sing whatever songs are sung, Wind whatever wreath, For a playmate perished young,. For a spirit spent in death.

Boys and girls that held her dear, All you loved of her lies here. He could not die when trees were green, For he loved the time too well. His little hands, when flowers were seen, Were held for the bluebell, As he was carried o'er the green. His eye glanced at the white-nosed bee; He knew those children of the spring: When he was well and on the lea He held one in his hands to sing, Which filled his heart with glee.

Infants, the children of the spring! How can an infant die When butterflies are on the wing, Green grass, and such a sky? How can they die at spring? He held his hands for daisies white, And then for violets blue, And took them all to bed at night That in the green fields grew, As childhood's sweet delight.

And then he shut his little eyes, And flowers would notice not; Birds' nests and eggs caused no surprise, He now no blossoms got; They met with plaintive sighs. When winter came and blasts did sigh, And bare were plain and tree, As he for ease in bed did lie His soul seemed with the free, He died so quietly. What on Earth deserves our trust? Youth and Beauty both are dust. Long we gathering are with pain, What one moment calls again.

Too promising, too great a mind In so small room to be confined: Therefore, as fit in Heaven to dwell, He quickly broke the Prison shell. The snow had begun in the gloaming, And busily all the night Had been heaping field and highway With a silence deep and white. Every pine and fir and hemlock Wore ermine too dear for an earl, And the poorest twig on the elm-tree Was ridged inch deep with pearl.

From sheds new-roofed with Carrara Came Chanticleer's muffled crow. The stiff rails were softened to swan's-down, And still fluttered down the snow. I stood and watched by the window The noiseless work of the sky, And the sudden flurries of snow-birds, Like brown leaves whirling by. I thought of a mound in sweet Auburn Where a little headstone stood; How the flakes were folding it gently, As did robins the babes in the wood. Up spoke our own little Mabel, Saying, "Father, who makes it snow? Again I looked at the snow-fall, And thought of the leaden sky That arched o'er our first great sorrow, When that mound was heaped so high.

I remember the gradual patience That fell from that cloud like snow, Flake by flake, healing and hiding The scar of our deep-plunged woe. And again to the child I whispered, "The snow that husheth all, Darling, the merciful Father Alone can make it fall! Then, with eyes that saw not, I kissed her; And she, kissing back, could not know That my kiss was given to her sister, Folded close under deepening snow.

He saw her from the bottom of the stairs Before she saw him. She was starting down, Looking back over her shoulder at some fear. She took a doubtful step and then undid it To raise herself and look again. I never noticed it from here before. The little graveyard where my people are! So small the window frames the whole of it. Not so much larger than a bedroom, is it?

There are three stones of slate and one of marble, Broad-shouldered little slabs there in the sunlight On the sidehill. I must get out of here. I must get air. Listen to me. But I might be taught I should suppose. A man must partly give up being a man With women-folk. Let me into your grief. Give me my chance. I do think, though, you overdo it a little. What was it brought you up to think it the thing To take your mother-loss of a first child So inconsolably—in the face of love.

You make me angry. God, what a woman! If you had any feelings, you that dug With your own hand—how could you? I thought, Who is that man? And I crept down the stairs and up the stairs To look again, and still your spade kept lifting. Then you came in. You had stood the spade up against the wall Outside there in the entry, for I saw it. What had how long it takes a birch to rot To do with what was in the darkened parlor?

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  • The nearest friends can go With anyone to death, comes so far short They might as well not try to go at all. No, from the time when one is sick to death, One is alone, and he dies more alone. Friends make pretense of following to the grave, But before one is in it, their minds are turned And making the best of their way back to life And living people, and things they understand. Close the door. I must go— Somewhere out of this house. First tell me that. I will! I found her out there On a slope few see, That falls westwardly To the salt-edged air, Where the ocean breaks On the purple strand, And the hurricane shakes The solid land.

    I brought her here, And have laid her to rest In a noiseless nest No sea beats near. She will never be stirred In her loamy cell By the waves long heard And loved so well. And would sigh at the tale Of sunk Lyonesse, As a wind-tugged tress Flapped her cheek like a flail Or listen at whiles With a thought-bound brow To the murmuring miles She is far from now. Yet her shade, maybe, Will creep underground Till it catch the sound Of that western sea As it swells and sobs Where she once domiciled, And joy in its throbs With the heart of a child.

    I know not her name, but her sorrow I know; While I paused on the crossing I lived it once more, And back to my heart surged that river of woe That but in the breast of a mother can flow; For the little white hearse has been, too, at my door. We wreathed about our darling's head The morning-glory bright; Her little face looked out beneath So full of life and light, So lit as with a sunrise, That we could only say, "She is the morning-glory true, And her poor types are they. So always from that happy time We called her by their name, And very fitting did it seem,— For sure as morning came, Behind her cradle bars she smiled To catch the first faint ray, As from the trellis smiles the flower And opens to the day.

    But not so beautiful they rear Their airy cups of blue, As turned her sweet eyes to the light, Brimmed with sleep's tender dew; And not so close their tendrils fine Round their supports are thrown, As those dear arms whose outstretched plea Clasped all hearts to her own. We used to think how she had come, Even as comes the flower, The last and perfect added gift To crown Love's morning hour; And how in her was imaged forth The love we could not say, As on the little dewdrops round Shines back the heart of day. We never could have thought, O God, That she must wither up, Almost before a day was flown, Like the morning-glory's cup; We never thought to see her droop Her fair and noble head, Till she lay stretched before our eyes, Wilted, and cold, and dead!

    The morning-glory's blossoming Will soon be coming round,— We see their rows of heart-shaped leaves Upspringing from the ground; The tender things the winter killed Renew again their birth, But the glory of our morning Has passed away from earth. Too harsh thy dews, too gross thine air, Her spirit to sustain; But up in groves of Paradise Full surely we shall see Our morning-glory beautiful Twine round our dear Lord's knee.

    O, could I lose all father now! For why Will man lament the state he should envy? For whose sake, henceforth, all his vows be such, As what he loves may never like too much. O mother-heart! Sorrow grew To throes intensest, when thy sad soul knew Thy youngest, too, must go. Was it not well, Avengers wroth, just one to spare? Ay, tell The ages of soul-struggle sterner? What mother-love beneath the Stoic lies! O SLEEP, my babe, hear not the rippling wave, Nor feel the breeze that round thee ling'ring strays To drink thy balmy breath, And sigh one long farewell. Soon shall it mourn above thy wat'ry bed, And whisper to me, on the wave-beat shore, Deep murm'ring in reproach, Thy sad untimely fate.

    Ere those dear eyes had open'd on the light, In vain to plead, thy coming life was sold, O waken'd but to sleep, Whence it can wake no more! A thousand and a thousand silken leaves The tufted beech unfolds in early spring, All clad in tenderest green, All of the self-same shape:. A thousand infant faces, soft and sweet, Each year sends forth, yet every mother views Her last not least beloved Like its dear self alone. No musing mind hath ever yet foreshaped The face to-morrow's sun shall first reveal, No heart hath e'er conceived What love that face will bring.

    O sleep, my babe, nor heed how mourns the gale To part with thy soft locks and fragrant breath, As when it deeply sighs O'er autumn's latest bloom. Would that I lay there And she were housed here! Or better, together Were folded away there Exposed to one weather We both, — who would stray there When sunny the day there, Or evening was clear At the prime of the year. Come away, O human child! Where the wave of moonlight glosses The dim gray sands with light, Far off by furthest Rosses We foot it all the night, Weaving olden dances Mingling hands and mingling glances Till the moon has taken flight; To and fro we leap And chase the frothy bubbles, While the world is full of troubles And anxious in its sleep.

    Where the wandering water gushes From the hills above Glen-Car, In pools among the rushes That scarce could bathe a star, We seek for slumbering trout And whispering in their ears Give them unquiet dreams; Leaning softly out From ferns that drop their tears Over the young streams. Such are the little memories of you; They come and go, return and lie apart From all main things of life; yet more than they, With noiseless feet, they come and grip the heart. Gay laughter leading quick and stormy tears, Then smiles again and pulse of flying feet, In breathless chase of fleeting gossamers, Are memories so dear, so bitter-sweet.

    No more are echoes of your flying feet. But love and memories of noiseless tread, Where angels hovered once, all shining fair, To tuck you in your little trundle bed, Kneel nightly now in agony of prayer. Above, beneath, to him is known,— The world's wide compass is his own. I love,—but in the world no more, Nor in gay hall, or festal bower; Not the fair forms I prized before,— But him, all beauty, wisdom, power, My Saviour, who has cast a chain On sin and ill, and woe and pain!

    I from my memory have effaced All former joys, all kindred, friends; All honors that my station graced I hold but snares that fortune sends: Hence! Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind? A very strange and solemn feeling came over me as I stood there, with no sound but the rustle of the pines, no one near me, and the sun so glorious, as for me alone. It seemed as if I felt God as I never did before, and I prayed in my heart that I might keep that happy sense of nearness in my life. Louisa May Alcott. There is not enough darkness in all the world to put out the light of even one small candle.

    Robert Alden. James W. Lord… give me the gift of faith to be renewed and shared with others each day. Teach me to live this moment only, looking neither to the past with regret, nor the future with apprehension. Let love be my aim and my life a prayer. Roseann Alexander-Isham. I presumed to fix my look on the eternal light so long that I consumed my sight thereon. Dante Alighieri. God reveals Himself through people. Someone was kind when we were sick, helped in time of trouble, was friendly when we were lonely.

    Someone we had wronged forgave in a spirit of love. In all such acts a little bit of God is revealed unto us. Charles L. Sorrow is a wound. It cuts deeply, but sorrow is a clean wound, and will heal unless something gets into the wound, such as bitterness, self-pity, or resentment. Study the lives of great people, and you will find every one of them drew apart from the hurry of life for rest and reflection. Great poems are not written on crowded streets, lovely songs are not written in the midst of clamoring multitudes; our visions of God come when we stop.

    Study the lives of those we call saints, those who have attained unusual spiritual power, and you will find their secret right at this point: they sinned, but they never surrendered to sin. They never accepted failure as final. They never ceased to look forward with confidence. Never place a period where God has placed a comma. Gracie Allen. Strength is found in weakness. Control is found in dependency. Power is found in surrender. Dan Allender. What is impossible to God? Not that which is difficult to His power, but that which is contrary to His nature.

    Life is short and we have not too much time for gladdening the hearts of those who are traveling the dark way with us. Oh, be swift to love! Make haste to be kind. Henri-Frederic Amiel. Only when grief finds its work done can God dispense us from it. Pay bad people with your goodness; fight their hatred with your kindness. Even in you do not achieve victory over other people, you will conquer yourself. Christ is our fortress, patience our weapon of defense, and the Word of God our sword. Amish proverb. Out of the will of God there is no such thing as success; in the will of God there is no such thing as failure.

    David Amstutz. The road is smooth. Why do you throw rocks before you? Ancient expression. If God is here for us and not elsewhere, then in fact this place is holy and this moment is sacred. Isabel Anders. In every marriage more than a week old, there are grounds for divorce. The trick is to find, and continue to find, grounds for marriage.

    Robert Anderson. This is the unique element in the gospel, which tells us that what we could never do, God has done. We cannot climb up to heaven to discover God, but God has come down to earth, in the person of his Son, to reveal himself to us in the only way we could really understand: in terms of a human life. There is little good in filling churches with people who go out exactly the same as they came in; the call of the Church is not to fill churches but to fill heaven. Andrew of Perugia. O God, who for our redemption gave Your only begotten Son to the death of the cross, and by His glorious resurrection delivered us from the power of our enemy: grant us so to die daily to sin, that we may evermore live with Him in the joy of His resurrection.

    Anglican Easter Prayer. There are only two people who can tell you the truth about yourself—an enemy who has lost his temper and a friend who loves you dearly. Give rest to the weary, visit the sick, support the poor; for this also is prayer. So I did. And He pushed me! And I flew! Guillaume Apollinaire.

    An angel can illumine the thought and mind of man by strengthening the power of vision, and by bringing within its reach some truth which the angel himself contemplates. Thomas Aquinas. Grant me, O Lord my God, a mind to know you, a heart to seek you, wisdom to find you, conduct pleasing to you, faithful perseverance in waiting for you, and a hope of finally embracing you.

    There was a man who heard about a very special ox and determined to have it for his own. He traveled all over the world. He spent his entire fortune. He gave his whole life to the search for this ox. At last, just moments before he died, he realized he had been riding it all the time. Anybody can become angry — that is easy; but to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way — that is not easy.

    I keep the telephone of my mind open to peace, harmony, health, love and abundance. Edith Armstrong. Kristin Armstrong. What are Christians put into the world for except to do the impossible in the strength of God? Milo L. True faith, real and pure faith, cannot be practiced in moderation. Stephen Arterburn. But if you are in covenant with Jesus Christ, He is responsible for covering your weaknesses, for being your strength. He will give you His abilities for your disabilities! Kay Arthur. What is your focus today? Joy comes when it is Jesus first, others second, then you. Why should I ever resist any delay or disappointment, any affliction or oppression or humiliation, when I know God will use it in my life to make me like Jesus and to prepare me for heaven?

    Your life is to be lived in such a way as to reflect Him, to show the world the character of God- His love, His peace, His mercy, His gentleness. You are to live for Him, to accomplish His will. To miss this purpose is to miss fulfillment. It is to have existed rather than to have lived. Everyone is required to recite at least one hundred blessings a day. Shulchan Aruch. Joseph Askinas. The vision of the angels works softly and peaceably, awakening joy and exultation in opposition to the turmoil into which demons throw the soul.

    Gil Atkinson. Myron Augsburger. And he departed from our sight that we might return to our heart, and there find Him. For He departed, and behold, He is here. Beware of despairing about yourself; you are commanded to put your trust in God, and not in yourself. Faith is to believe what you do not yet see, the reward for this faith is to see what you believe. Find out how much God has given you and from it take what you need; the remainder is needed by others. For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them. God Almighty would in no way permit evil in His works were He not so omnipotent and good that even out of evil He could work good.

    God has promised forgiveness to your repentance, but He has not promised tomorrow to your procrastination. God is not a deceiver, that He should offer to support us, and then, when we lean upon Him, should slip away from us. God judged it better to bring good out of evil than to suffer no evil to exist.

    God loves you as though you are the only person in the world, and he loves everyone the way he loves you. God of our life, there are days when the burdens we carry chafe our shoulders and weigh us down; when the road seems dreary and endless, the skies gray and threatening; when our lives have no music in them, and our hearts are lonely, and our souls have lost their courage.

    Flood the path with light, run our eyes to where the skies are full of promise; tune our hearts to brave music; give us the sense of comradeship with heroes and saints of every age; and so quicken our spirits that we may be able to encourage the souls of all who journey with us on the road of life, to your honor and glory. Happiness consists in the attainment of our desires, and in our having only right desires. His knowledge is not like ours, which has three tenses: present, past, and future. Idolatry is worshiping anything that ought to be used, or using anything that is meant to be worshiped.

    If we live good lives, the times are also good. As we are, such are the times. Insomuch as love grows in you, so in you beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul. Learn to pray to God in such a way that you are trusting Him as your Physician to do what He knows is best. Confess to Him the disease, and let Him choose the remedy. Let your old age be childlike, and your childhood like old age; that is, so that neither may your wisdom be with pride, nor your humility without wisdom.

    Love has hands to help others. It has feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. This is what love looks like. No man has a right to lead such a life of contemplation as to forget in his own ease the service due to his neighbor; nor has any man a right to be so immersed in active life as to neglect the contemplation of God.

    Order your soul; reduce your wants; live in charity; associate in Christian community; obey the laws; trust in Providence. Prayer is not merely expressing our present desires. Its purpose is to exercise and train our desires, so that we want what he is getting ready to give us. His gift is very great, and we are small vessels for receiving it. So prayer involves widening our hearts to God. Seek not abroad, turn back into thy self for in the inner man dwells the truth. Some people, in order to discover God, read books.

    But there is a great book: the very appearance of created things. Look above you! Look below you! Read it. The Almighty does nothing without reason, though the frail mind of man cannot explain the reason. The Bible was composed in such a way that as beginners mature, its meaning grows with them.

    The child of many prayers shall never perish. An old Christian, to Monica, mother of Augustine. The love of God is the first and great commandment. But love for our neighbor is the means by which we obey it. Since we cannot see God directly, God allows us to catch sight of him through our neighbor. By loving our neighbor we purge our eyes to see God. So love your neighbor and you will discover that in doing so you come to know God. The most profound essence of my nature is that I am capable of receiving God. This joy in God is not like any pleasure found in physical or intellectual satisfaction.

    Nor is it such as a friend experiences in the presence of a friend. But, if we are to use any such analogy, it is more like the eye rejoicing in light. No misfortune can disturb it. It obeys only [God] and is careful in discerning things, so as not to be surprised by deceit or trickery. Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee. Two works of mercy set a man free: forgive and you will be forgiven, and give and you will receive. We are Christians and strangers on this earth.

    Let none of us be frightened; our native land is not this world. We may pray most when we say least, and we may pray least when we say most. What can be more excellent than prayer; what is more profitable to our life; what sweeter to our souls; what more sublime, in the course of our whole life, than the practice of prayer!

    When God crowns our merits, it is nothing other than his own gifts that he crowns. When God is our strength, it is strength indeed; when our strength is our own, it is only weakness. Where your pleasure is, there is your treasure; where your treasure, there your heart; where your heart, there your happiness. Whoever seems to himself to have understood the divine scriptures in such a way that he does not build up that double love of God and neighbor has not yet understood.

    You have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until they rest in you. If you are a baptized Christian, you are already a minister. Whether you are ordained or not is immaterial. No matter how you react, the statement remains true. You may be surprised, alarmed, pleased, antagonized, suspicious, acquiescent, scornful, or enraged. Nevertheless, you are a minister of Christ. Francis O. John Ayscough. Life is what we are alive to. It is not length but breadth… Be alive to… goodness, kindness, purity, love, history, poetry, music, flowers, stars, God, and eternal hope.

    Maltbie Babcock. When I want to speak let me think first. Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? If not, let it be left unsaid. When Christ came into the world, peace was sung; and when He went out of the world, peace was bequeathed. Francis Bacon. Gratitude is not only the dominant note in Christian piety but equally the dominant motive of Christian action in the world. Such gratitude is for the grace that has been shown us by God. A true Christian is a man who never for a moment forgets what God has done for him in Christ, and whose whole comportment and whole activity have their root in the sentiment of gratitude.

    John Baillie. What makes humility so desirable is the marvelous thing it does to us; it creates in us a capacity for the closest possible intimacy with God. Monica Baldwin. The best thing to give your enemy is forgiveness; to an opponent, tolerance; to a friend, your heart; to your child, a good example; to a father, deference; to your mother, conduct that will make her proud of you; to yourself, respect; to all men, charity.

    John Balfour. Save some before you spend, spend less than you earn, and honor the Lord by your tithing. There is one trouble with full-time angels; they are completely unpredictable and you cannot send out for one. That is why part-time angels are so important. Part-time angels like you and me. Lee Ballard. We know that people we love are both good and bad, but we expect strangers to be one or the other.

    Russell Banks. Too many of us have a Christian vocabulary rather than a Christian experience. Charles F. A cardinal was approached one day in the cathedral by a very excited young priest. What should we do? I walk through it almost with difficulty, as through thick grass and flowers. More people have been brought into the church by the kindness of real Christian love than by all the theological arguments in the world, and more people have been driven from the church by the hardness and ugliness of so-called Christianity than by all the doubts in the world.

    William Barclay. The best way to prepare for the coming of Christ is never to forget the presence of Christ. The word grace emphasizes at one and the same time the helpless poverty of man and the limitless kindness of God. There is only one way to bring peace to the heart, joy to the mind, and beauty to the life; it is to accept and do the will of God. Donald Grey Barnhouse. Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so. Karl Barth His summation of his enormous knowledge of theology.

    They crucified him with the criminals. Do you know what this implies? Christian community is manifest wherever there is a group of people close to Jesus who are with him in such a way that they are directly and unambiguously affected by his promise and assurance. These may hear that everything he is, he is for them, and everything he does, he does for them. To live by this promise is to be a Christian community.

    Karl Barth. The art of living lies less in eliminating our troubles than in growing with them. Bernard M. The bread that you store up belongs to the hungry; the cloak that lies on your chest belongs to the naked; and the gold that you have hidden in the ground belongs to the poor. Basil of Caesarea.

    What is the mark of a Christian? Faith working by love. One of the most lasting pleasures you can experience is the feeling that comes over you when you genuinely forgive an enemy — whether he knows it or not. Do not let us fail one another in interest, care and practical help; but supremely we must not fail one another in prayer. Michael Baughen. Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons, but they are helpless against our prayers. Sidlow Baxter.

    Spend your time in nothing you know must be repented of; in nothing on which you might not pray the blessing of God; in nothing which you could not review with a quiet conscience on your dying bed; in nothing which you might not safely and properly be found doing if death should surprise you in the act. I preached as never sure to preach again, and as a dying man to dying men. Richard Baxter. Joseph Bayly. People in general, Christian people in particular, tend to divide sins into two categories: their sins and our sins.

    The Bible, of course, knows no such distinction. Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.

    Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. Melody Beattie. A helping word to one in trouble is often like a switch on a railroad track, an inch between wreck and smooth-rolling prosperity. Henry Ward Beecher. A man that does not know how to be angry does not know how to be good. A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs, jolted by every pebble in the road.

    A world without a Sabbath would be like a man without a smile, like a summer without flowers, and like a homestead without a garden. It is the most joyous day of the whole week. All men are tempted. There is no man that lives that cannot be broken down, provided it is the right temptation, put in the right spot. Anxiety in human life is what squeaking and grinding are in machinery that is not oiled. In life, trust is the oil. Children are the hands by which we take hold of heaven.

    Every tomorrow has two handles. We can take hold of it with the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith.

    Mindfulness Poetry for Transformation | Mindful Living Programs

    Find out what your temptations are and you will find out largely what you are yourself. God washes the eyes by tears until they can behold the invisible land where tears shall come no more. If a man cannot be a Christian in the place where he is, he cannot be a Christian anywhere. In this world it is not what we take up, but what we give up, that makes us rich. Let the day have a blessed baptism by giving your first waking hours and thoughts into the bosom of God. The first hour of the morning is the rudder of the day.

    There is no thought, feeling, yearning or desire, however low, trifling, or vulgar we may deem it, which, if it affects our real interest or happiness, we may not lay before God and be sure of sympathy. His nature is such that our often coming does not tire him.

    The whole burden of the whole life of every man may be rolled on to God and not weary him, though it has wearied the man. To speak painful truth through loving words- that is friendship. What the mother sings to the cradle goes all the way down to the coffin. Jim Beggs. Each of us has a capacity for God and an ability to relate to him in a personal way. When we do, he brings to us pardon for the past, peace for the present, and a promise for the future. Ralph S. On the last day, when the general examination takes place, … charity will be the whole syllabus. Robert Bellarmine.

    David Ben-Gurion. Let me find thy light in my darkness, thy life in my death, thy joy in my sorrow, thy grace in my sin, thy riches in my poverty, thy glory in my valley. Arthur Bennett. How desperately difficult it is to be honest with oneself. It is much easier to be honest with other people. Edward Benson. Nicolas Berdyaev. The question of bread for myself is a material question; but the question of bread for my neighbour, for everybody, is a spiritual and a religious question.

    Nikolai Berdyaev. George Bernanus. Bernard of Clairvaux. Nothing but the name of Jesus can restrain the impulse of anger, repress the swelling of pride, cure the world of envy, bridle the onslaught of luxury, extinguish the flame of carnal desire- can temper avarice, and put to flight impure and ignoble thoughts.

    Wherever you are, pray secretly within yourself. If you are far from a house of prayer, give not yourself trouble to seek for one, for you yourself are a sanctuary designed for prayer. If you are in bed, or in any other place, pray there; your temple is there. Bernard of Clairvau.

    We might as well get right to the point. Bruce Bickel. We are called to show the gospel. James E. Biles, Sr. Try it. It works. Just imagine everyone you meet is trying to bring happiness and joy to your life. And then try to do the same for them. Rich Biller. If you ever find happiness by hunting for it, you will find it, as the old woman did her lost spectacles- safe on her own nose all the time. Josh Billings. One-half the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too quickly and not saying no soon enough. Attention to detail is the secret of success in every sphere of life, and little kindnesses, little acts of considerateness, little appreciations, little confidences…they are all that are needed to keep the friendship sweet.

    Hugh Black. Henry Blackaby. Faith does not eliminate problems. Faith keeps you in a trusting relationship with God in the midst of your problems. Jesus, the ultimate model for the Christian life, did not rely on His own best thinking, but depended completely on His heavenly Father for wisdom in everything. Will God ever ask you to do something you are not able to do?

    The answer is yes- all the time! If we function according to our ability alone, we get the glory; if we function according to the power of the Spirit within us, God gets the glory. He wants to reveal Himself to a watching world. Thomas Blackaby. All this adds up to the meaning of peace. It is the gift of Christ. Oscar F. Each dawn holds a new hope for a new plan, making the start of each day the start of a new life. Gina Blair. Charles E. The answer to all these questions is the same: Every day!

    John Blanchard. I give it as my testimony that there is a marvelous therapy in thanksgiving. If you are holding something back from God, then God is holding something back from you. It is impossible to be too preoccupied with God, and it is only as we fill our hearts and minds with him that we become melted out of our likeness and moulded into his. The Christian who is truly spiritual revels as much in his ignorance of God as in his knowledge of him. Nice guys may appear to finish last, but usually they are running in a different race.

    Ken Blanchard. The phone rang in the office of a Washington D. No sorrow touches man until it has been filtered through the heart of God. Joseph Blinco. He wants us as covenant partners, not as automons or slaves. Donald Bloesch. When we pray, it is far more important to pray with a sense of the greatness of God than with a sense of the greatness of the problem. Evangeline Blood. James Montgomery Boice. If you want to know God as he speaks to you through the Bible, you should study the Bible daily, systematically, comprehensively, devotionally, and prayerfully.

    Erma Bombeck. If the Father has the kingdom ready for us, he will take care of us on the way. Andrew Bonar. Similarly, if we follow close after the Lord, we would easily see the footsteps along the way, but if we try to follow afar off, we would find it difficult to know the path of His will. In order to grow in grace, we must be much alone. It is not in society that the soul grows most vigorously. In one single quite hour of prayer it will often make more progress than in days of company with others.

    It is in the desert that the dew falls freshest and the air ifs purest. Horatius Bonar. The more fully that the gospel is preached, in the grand old apostolic way, the more likely is it to accomplish the results which it did in the apostolic days. Prayer is such an ordinary, everyday, mundane thing. Certainly, people who pray are no more saints than the rest of us. Rather, they are people who want to share a life with God, to love and be loved, to speak and to listen, to work and to be at rest in the presence of God.

    Roberta Bondi. Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.

    Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Do not desire to be strong, powerful, honoured and respected; but let God alone be your strength, your fame, your honour. In Jesus the service of God and the service of the least of the brethren were one. Much that worries us beforehand can, quite unexpectedly, have a happy and simple solution. Things really are in a better hand than ours. The hungry need bread and the homeless need a roof; the dispossessed need justice and the lonely need fellowship; the undisciplined need order and the slaves need freedom. We are silent at the beginning of the day because God should have the first word, and we are silent before going to sleep because the last word also belongs to God.

    Take that gift God has entrusted to you, and use it in the service of Christ and your fellow men. He will make it glow and shine like the very stars of heaven. John Sutherland Bonnell. Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified; mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life, and peace; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Book of Common Prayer.

    A religion that is small enough for our understanding would not be big enough for our needs. Corrie ten Boom. Dear Jesus, how foolish of me to have called for human help when You are here. Have an appointment with the Lord and keep it. A man is powerful on his knees. Every experience God gives us, every person he puts in our lives, is the perfect preparation for the future that only he can see.

    Four marks of true repentance are: acknowledgment of wrong, willingness to confess it, willingness to abandon it, and willingness to make restitution. I am eighty-five years old and I am so thankful that I am able to continue the work I love. God has a plan for every life. All of us are called to be the light of the world wherever He places us.

    We are within His perfect guidance when we trust and obey Him. A tool does not decide where to work. It is the Master who decides where it is to be used. When He tells us to love our enemies, He gives, along with the command, the love itself. If a bird is flying for pleasure, it flies with the wind, but if it meets danger it turns and faces the wind, in order that it may rise higher. If a care is too small to be turned into a prayer it is too small to be made into a burden.

    If all things are possible with God, then all things are possible to him who believes in Him. If Jesus were born one thousand times in Bethlehem and not in me, then I would still be lost. In the center of a hurricane there is absolute quiet and peace. There is no safer place than in the center of the will of God.

    It would seem, after having been a Christian for almost 80 years, that I would no longer do ugly things that need forgiving. Yet I am constantly doing things to others that cause me to have to go back and ask their forgiveness. There is nothing anybody else can do that can stop God from using us. We can turn everything into a testimony. To pray only when in peril is to use safety belts only in heavy traffic. But when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the ministry of Jesus just flows out of you. We can all get to heaven without health, without wealth, without fame, without learning, without culture, without beauty, without friends, without ten thousand things.

    But we can never get to heaven without Christ. When a Christian shuns fellowship with other Christians, the devil smiles. When he stops studying the Bible, the devil laughs. When he stops praying, the devil shouts for joy. When Jesus tells us to love our enemies, He Himself will give us the love with which to do it. We are neither factories nor reservoirs of His love, only channels. When we understand that, all excuse for pride is eliminated. When we are powerless to do a thing, it is a great joy that we can come and step inside the ability of Jesus. Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.

    It does not enable us to escape evil. It makes us unfit to face evil when it comes. It is the interest you pay on trouble before it comes. You can do more than praying after you have prayed. You can never do more than praying before you have prayed. Corrie Ten Boom. Faith and works should travel side by side, step answering to step, like the legs of men walking. First faith, and then works; and then faith again, and then works again- until you can scarcely distinguish which is one and which is the other. William Booth. The chief dangers that confront the coming centuries will be religion without the Holy Spirit; Christianity without Christ; forgiveness without repentance; salvation without regeneration; politics without God; and heaven without hell.

    Ruth Boorstin. To have a God who is almighty, all wise, all good and merciful to go to as your constant friend, as your continual benefactor, as your safeguard and guide, it should- it must- sweeten every bitter drought of life. Elias Boudinot. By prayer, the ability is secured to feel the law of love, to speak according to the law of love, and to do everything in harmony with the law of love. Let prayer nourish your soul as your meals nourish your body.

    Prayer should not be regarded as a duty which must be performed, but rather as a privilege to be enjoyed, a rare delight that is always revealing some new beauty. The story of every great Christian achievement is the history of answered prayer. To pray is the greatest thing we can do, and to do it well, there must be calmness, time, and deliberation. Friendships are fragile things, and require as much care in handling as any other fragile and precious thing.

    Randolph S. Men substitute tradition for the living experience of the love of God. They talk and think as though walking with God was attained by walking in the footsteps of men who walked with God. William Charles Braithwaite. Brakkenstein Community of Blessed Sacrament Fathers. If God had wanted to be a big secret, He would not have created babbling brooks and whispering pines. Robert Brault. Today I bent the truth to be kind, and I have no regret, for I am far surer of what is kind than I am of what is true.

    Brendan To King Brude. When I was a little boy on the sun-bathed prairies of southern Illinois, a year seemed interminable- it moved forward on leaden feet. Now the years pass like the flash of sunlit bubbles on wind-tossed waves, as though they must hasten and lose themselves in that eternity when time shall be no more.

    And yet what an unspeakable gift of God is a year! Who can compute its value or estimate its worth? Samuel Logan Brengle. Dear God, Be good to me. The sea is so wide, and my boat is so small. Be aware that most people are operating on a very condensed version of the Ten Commandments: the part about murder. Mark Bricklin. From our limited vantage point, our lives are marked by an endless series of contingencies. We frequently find ourselves, instead of acting as we planned, reacting to an unexpected turn of events. We make plans but are often forced to change those plans.

    But there are no contingencies with God. Our unexpected, forced change of plans is a part of His plan. God is never surprised; never caught off guard; never frustrated by unexpected developments. God does as He pleases and that which pleases Him is always for His glory and our good. Jerry Bridges. God never allows pain without a purpose in the lives of His children. He never allows Satan, nor circumstances, nor any ill-intending person to afflict us unless He uses that affliction for our good. God never wastes pain. One thing we may be sure of, however: For the believer all pain has meaning; all adversity is profitable.


    There is no question that adversity is difficult. It usually takes us by surprise and seems to strike where we are most vulnerable. To us it often appears completely senseless and irrational, but to God none of it is either senseless or irrational. He has a purpose in every pain He brings or allows in our lives. We can be sure that in some way He intends it for our profit and His glory.

    Jeff Bridges. Every day, I find countless opportunities to decide whether I will obey God and demonstrate my love for Him or try to please myself or the world system. Bill Bright. Set goals so big that unless God helps you, you will be a miserable failure. The sermon of your life in tough times ministers to people more powerfully than the most eloquent speaker. If only God would lean out of heaven and tell me [my children] are going to make it, I could relax. He tells us to be the parents he has called us to be in his strength and promises to do his part. Jill Briscoe. No one has any more time than you have.

    It is the discipline and stewardship of your time that is important. The management of time is the management of self; therefore if you manage time with God, He will be begin to manage you. The management of time is the management of self; therefore, if you manage time with God, he will begin to manage you. You may have no family, no food, no clothes, no future, no spouse, no health, or no children, yet be rich beyond your wildest dreams because you have the Holy Spirit in your life. The wrath of God is as pure as the holiness of God.

    When God is angry he is perfectly angry. When he is displeased there is every reason he should be. We tend to think of anger as sin; but sometimes it is sinful not to be angry. It is unthinkable that God would not be purely and perfectly angry with sin. Stuart Briscoe. I avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward.

    Charlotte Bronte. Do not pray for easy lives; pray to be stronger people! Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers; pray for powers equal to your tasks. Then the doing of your work shall be no miracle, but you shall be a miracle. Every day you shall wonder at yourself, at the richness of life with has come to you by the grace of God.

    Phillips Brooks.

    Liam's Quest: Full Circle - Critical Role RPG

    He who helps a child helps humanity with an immediateness which no other help given to human creatures in any other stage of their life can possibly give again. It does not take great men to do great things; it only takes consecrated men. Pray the largest prayers. You cannot think a prayer so large that God, in answering it, will not wish you had made it larger. Pray not for crutches but for wings. The true Bible is not the dead book, but the living reality, developed by the Spirit of God in the conscience of mankind.

    It is not a printed thing. The printed thing is the memorial of it, a souvenir of it, a mere chart; and a chart is not the ocean. Everywhere, everywhere, Christmas tonight! You must learn, you must let God teach you, that the only way to get rid of your past is to make a future out of it.

    God will waste nothing. Thomas Brooks. God hath in Himself all power to defend you, all wisdom to direct you, all mercy to pardon you, all grace to enrich you, all righteousness to clothe you, all goodness to supply you, and all happiness to crown you. God looks not at the oratory of your prayers, how elegant they may be; nor at the geometry of your prayers, how long they may be; nor at the arithmetic of your prayers, how many they may be; nor at the logic of your prayers, how methodical they may be; but the sincerity of them, he looks at.

    The Lord has made a promise to late repentance, but where has he made a promise of late repentance? Though our private desires are ever so confused, though our private requests are ever so broken, and though our private groanings are ever so hidden from men, yet God eyes them, records them, and puts them upon the file of heaven, and will one day crown them with glorious answers and returns. Till men have faith in Christ, their best services are but glorious sins.

    Your life is short, your duties many, your assistance great, and your reward sure; therefore faint not, hold on and hold up, in ways of well-doing, and heaven shall make amends for all. Worry less about offending the people and more about offending the Gospel.

    William Brosend. All things are possible to him who believes, yet more to him who hopes, more still to him who loves, and most of all to him who practices and perseveres in these three virtues. Brother Lawrence. He converses and delights Himself with me incessantly, in a thousand and a thousand ways, and treats me in all respects as His favourite. I am filled with shame and confusion, when I reflect on the one hand upon the great favors which God has done, and incessantly continues to do; and on the other, upon the ill use I have made of them, and my small advancement in the way of perfection.

    I wish you could convince yourself that God is often nearer to us, and more effectually present with us, in sickness than in health. If we knew how much He loves us, we should be always ready to receive equally and with indifference from His hand the sweet and the bitter; all would please that came from Him. Many do not advance in Christian progress because they stick in penances and particular exercises, while they neglect the love of God, which is the end.