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by [?]

All things most excellent
Are likened unto thee, excellent thing!
Yea, He who from the Father forth was sent,
Came the true Light, light to our hearts to bring;
The Word of God, the telling of His thought;
The Light of God, the making-visible;
The far-transcending glory brought
In human form with man to dwell;
The dazzling gone; the power not less
To show, irradiate, and bless;
The gathering of the primal rays divine,
Informing chaos, to a pure sunshine!

Death, darkness, nothingness!
Life, light, and blessedness!

* * * * *

Dull horrid pools no motion making;
No bubble on the surface breaking;
Through the dead heavy air, no sound;
Asleep and moveless on the marshy ground.

* * * * *

Rushing winds and snow-like drift,
Forceful, formless, fierce, and swift;
Hair-like vapours madly riven;
Waters smitten into dust;
Lightning through the turmoil driven,
Aimless, useless, yet it must.

* * * * *

Gentle winds through forests calling;
Big waves on the sea-shore falling;
Bright birds through the thick leaves glancing;
Light boats on the big waves dancing;
Children in the clear pool laving;
Mountain streams glad music giving;
Yellow corn and green grass waving;
Long-haired, bright-eyed maidens living;
Light on all things, even as now–
God, our Father, it is Thou!
Light, O Radiant! thou didst come abroad,
To mediate ‘twixt our ignorance and God;
Forming ever without form;
Showing, but thyself unseen;
Pouring stillness on the storm;
Making life where death had been!
If thou, Light, didst cease to be,
Death and Chaos soon were out,
Weltering o’er the slimy sea,
Riding on the whirlwind’s rout;
And if God did cease to be,
O Beloved! where were we?

Father of Lights, pure and unspeakable,
On whom no changing shadow ever fell!
Thy light we know not, are content to see;
And shall we doubt because we know not Thee?
Or, when thy wisdom cannot be expressed,
Fear lest dark vapours dwell within thy breast?
Nay, nay, ye shadows on our souls descending!
Ye bear good witness to the light on high,
Sad shades of something ‘twixt us and the sky!
And this word, known and unknown radiant blending,
Shall make us rest, like children in the night,–
Word infinite in meaning: God is Light.
We walk in mystery all the shining day
Of light unfathomed that bestows our seeing,
Unknown its source, unknown its ebb and flow:
Thy living light’s eternal fountain-play
In ceaseless rainbow pulse bestows our being–
Its motions, whence or whither, who shall know?
O Light, if I had said all I could say
Of thy essential glory and thy might,
Something within my heart unsaid yet lay,
And there for lack of words unsaid must stay:
For God is Light.