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WOULD have gone; God bade me stay:
I would have worked ; God bade me rest. He broke my will from day to day, He read my yearnings unexpressed
And said them nay.
Now I would stay; God bids me go:
Now I would rest; God bids me work.
And vex it so.
I go, Lord, where Thou sendest me;
Day after day I plod and moil; But, Christ my God, when will it be That I may let alone my toil
And rest with Thee ?
COW is that before mine eyes,
While gazing on thy mien,
All my past years of life arise, As in a mirror seen ? What spell within thee hath been shrined, To image back my own deep mind ?
Even as a song of other times,
Can trouble Memory's springs; Even as a sound of vesper-chimes,
Can wake departed things ; Even as a scent of vernal flowers Hath records fraught with vanished hours;
Such power is thine !—they come, the dead,
From the grave's bondage free,
TO MY OWN PORTRAIT.
And smiling back the changed are led,
To look in love on thee;
Till crowding thoughts my soul oppress,
The thoughts of happier years,
O’erflows in child-like tears;
But thou, the while-oh, almost strange,
Mine imaged self ! it seems
Reflects my own swift dreams :
To see thee calm, while powers thus deep,
O'er a frail aspen-leaf !
TO MY OWN PORTRAIT
Yet look thou still serenely on;
And if sweet friends there be,
Shall seek my form in thee,--
HE number of Thine own complete,
Sum up and make an end ; Sift clean the chaff, and house the wheat, And then, O Lord, descend.
Descend, and solve by that descent
This mystery of life;
Wage an undying strife.
For rivers twain are gushing still
And pour a mingled flood; Good in the very depths of ill,
Ill in the heart of good.