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Borrow their blameless thoughts, their calm
And Christian matrons seek Thy spirit mild and meek, Thy holy wisdom; sons and reverend sires, By love like thine in Christian nurture rear'd, Still bless the mother's looks, the mother's tones revered.
But hark! the trump of doom Peals through, and bursts the tomb! The living and the dead together throng Before the eternal throne, Whereon He sits alone, Who died upon the cross for human wrong. Mary, the child to whom thy womb gave birth, Unveil'd in glory stands; sole judge of heaven and earth.
And thee, and us, and all, That dreadful trump must call, To hear our several dooms by Him decreed: In terror of that day Vain fancy melts away, E'en Christian faith doth tremble like a reed Sway'd by the wind: we think of Thee no more; Our song is silent now; its music past and o'er.
HYMN FOR EASTER EVE,
APRIL 2, 1836.
All is o'er—the pain, the sorrow,
Human taunts, and fiendish spite; Death shall be despoil'd to-morrow
Of the prey he grasps to-night; Yet once more, to seal his doom, Christ must sleep within the tomb.
ii. Close and still the cell that holds him,
While in brief repose he lies; Deep the slumber that enfolds him
Veil'd awhile from mortal eyes:
Which on yonder cross he bore;
Till the toil of death was o'er. But that toil, so fierce and dread, Bruised and crush'd the serpent's head.
Whither hath his soul departed?
Roams it on some blissful shore, Where the meek and faithful-hearted,
Vext by this world's hate no more,
To the imprison'd spirits sent,
Gleams of hope and mercy lent—
Ask no more, the abyss is deeper
E'en than angels' thoughts may scan;
Come and watch the heavenly sleeper,
Reverence meet toward Him to prove,
Faith and trust and humble love.
Far away, amidst the regions
Of the bright and balmy east, Guarded by angelic legions
Till Death's slumber shall have ceased, (How should we its stillness stir ?) Lies the Saviour's sepulchre.
Far away—yet thought would wander
(Thought by Faith's sure guidance led), Farther yet to weep and ponder
* 1 Peter, iii. 19, 20.
Over that sepulchral bed. Thither let us haste and flee On the wings of phantasy.
Haste, from every clime and nation,
Fervent youth, and reverend age; Peasant, prince, each rank and station,
Haste, and join this pilgrimage; East and west, and south and north, Send your saintliest spirits forth.
x. Mothers, ere the curtain closes
Round your children's sleep to-night, Tell them how their Lord reposes,
Waiting for to-morrow's light; Teach their dreams to Him to rove, Him who loved them, Him they love.
Matron grave and blooming maiden,
Hearts with grief and care o'erladen,
Come and greet, in death's dark hall,
Him who felt with, felt for all.
Men of God, devoutly toiling
Satan of his prey despoiling
Let to-night your labours cease,
Give your care-worn spirits peace.
Ye who roam o'er seas and mountains,
Messengers of love and light;
Weary day and wakeful night;
Dwellers in the woods and valleys,
Ye of meek and lowly breast; Ye who pent in crowded alleys,
Labour early, late take rest; Leave the plough, and leave the loom, Meet us at our Saviour's tomb.
xv. From your halls of stately beauty,
Sculptured roof and marble floor, In this work of Christian duty
Haste, ye rich, and join the poor. Mean and noble, bond and free, Meet in frank equality.
Lo, his grave I the grey rock closes
Near it breathe the garden roses,
In whose boughs the small birds rest,
And the stock-dove builds her nest.
And the moon with floods of splendour Fills the spicy midnight air;