Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!

A Vision Of Consolation
by [?]

THE tempest of grief which, for a time, had raged so wildly in the heart of Mrs. Freeland, exhausted by its own violence, sobbed itself away, and the stricken mother passed into the land of dreams.

To the afflicted, sleep comes with a double blessing–rest is given to the wearied body and to the grieving spirit. Often, very often, the Angel of Consolation bends to the dreaming ear, and whispers words of hope and comfort that from no living lips had yet found utterance.

And it was so now with the sleeping mother. A few hours only had passed since she stood looking down, for the last time, on the fair face of her youngest born. Over his bright, blue eyes, into whose heavenly depths she had so loved to gaze, the pale lids had closed for ever. Still lingered around his lips the smile left there by the angels, as, with a kiss of love, they received his parting spirit. In the curling masses of his rich, golden hair, the shadows nestled away, as of old, while his tiny fingers held a few white blossoms, as with a living grasp. Was it death or sleep? So like a sleeping child the sweet boy lay, that it seemed every moment as if his lips would unclose, his eyes open to the light, and his voice come to the listening ear with its tones of music.

If to the mother had come this illusion, it remained not long. Wild with grief, she turned away as the sweet face she had so loved to gaze upon was hidden from her straining eyes for ever.

Hidden from her eyes, did we say? Only hidden from her natural eyes. Still he was before the eyes of her spirit in all his living beauty. But, to her natural affections, he was lost–even as he had faded from before her natural eyes; and, in the agony of bereavement, it seemed that her heart would break. Back to her darkened chamber she went. Her nearest and dearest friends gathered around, seeking lovingly to sustain her in her great affliction; but she refused to be comforted.

At length, as at first said, the tempest of grief, which, for a time, raged so violently in the heart of Mrs. Freeland, sobbed itself away, and the stricken mother passed into the land of dreams.

For the most part, dreams are fantastic. Yet they are not always so. In states of deep sorrow or strong trial, when the heart turns from the natural world, hopeless of aid or consolation, truth often comes in dreams and similitudes.

The mother found herself in the company of two beautiful maidens, in the very flower of youth; and as she gazed earnestly into their faces, which seemed transparent from an inward celestial light, she saw expectation therein–loving expectation. They stood beneath the eastern portico of a pleasant dwelling, around which stately trees–the branches vocal with the song of feathered minstrels–lifted their green tops far up into the crystal air. Flowers of a thousand hues and sweet odours were woven into forms and figures of exquisite beauty upon the carpet of living green spread over the teeming earth, while groups of little children sported one with another, and mingled their happy voices with the melody of birds.

Yet, amid all this external joy and beauty, the hand of grief still lay upon the mother’s heart; and when she looked upon the sportive infants around her, she sighed for her own babe. Even as she sighed, one of the maidens turned to her and said, while her whole countenance was lit up with a glow of delight–

“It has come. A new babe is born unto heaven.”

And, as she spoke, she gathered her arms quickly to her bosom, and the wondering mother saw lying thereon her own child. The other maiden was already bending over the infant–already had she greeted its coming with a kiss of love. Quickly both retired within the dwelling, and the bereaved mother went with them, eager to receive the babe she had lost.