AFFECTIONATELY INSCRIBED TO A DEAR FRIEND ON THE DEATH OF A BELOVED FATHER.
The dawn-light wakes, and brightens to the day,
And the slow sun climbs the far eastern skies,
Then, down the western slopes pursues his way,
Till shadows deepen and the twilight dies;–
And still I muse, and wait, and list in vain
For feet that never, never will return,–
For loving words I may not hear again,
Howe’er with ear attent I wait and yearn.
O love that never wavered, never changed!
How shall I miss thee as the years go by?
O tenderest heart that could be estranged!–
O fount that age and suffring could not dry!–
O guiding hand to earliest thought endeared–
O hand that after clung so long to me!–
O patient Father, honored, loved, revered!
How shall I hear life’s burden wanting thee?
Be still, fond heart!–another Father, thine–
Both his and thine–still on thee bends His eye;
Thou canst not walk alone, for Love Divine,
Unseen, yet near, each starting tear will dry.
Lean on the strong, true breast, of Love more deep,
More constant far than earthly love may be,
Who gently soothed his pain, and gave him sleep,
And shall enfold, uplift, and comfort thee!
So lay thy burden in His hands, and rest!
Thy Lord hath fathomed every earthly woe;
With patient feet Earth’s thorniest pathway pressed,
And left the tomb with Heaven’s light aglow;–
For, what them seest not now, some other day,
In lands unreached by sorrow’s dreary knell,
Thou in His light shalt read, and meekly say,
“E’en so, dear Lord, Thou hast done all things well.”