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Thou seemest human and divine,
The highest, holiest manhood, thou :
Our wills are ours, we know not how ; Our wills are ours, to make them thine.
Our little systems have their day ;
They have their day and cease to be :
They are but broken lights of thee, And thou, O Lord, art more than they.
We have but faith : we cannot know ;
For knowledge is of things we see ;
And yet we trust it comes from thee, A beam in darkness : let it grow.
Let knowledge grow from more to more,
But more of reverence in us dwell ;
That mind and soul, according well, May make one music as before,
But vaster. We are fools and slight ;
We mock thee when we do not fear :
But help thy foolish ones to bear ; Help thy vain worlds to bear thy light.
Forgive what seem'd my sin in me ;
What seem'd my worth since I began ;
For merit lives from man to man, And not from man, O Lord, to thee.
Forgive my grief for one removed,
Thy creature, whom I found so fair.
I trust he lives in thee, and there I find him worthier to be loved.
Forgive these wild and wandering cries,
Confusions of a wasted youth ;
Forgive them where they fail in truth, And in thy wisdom make me wise.
I HELD it truth, with him who sings
To one clear harp in divers tones,
That men may rise on stepping-stones Of their dead selves to higher things.
But who shall so forecast the years
And find in loss a gain to match ?
Or reach a hand thro’ time to catch The far-off interest of tears?
Let Love clasp Grief lest both be drown'd,
Let darkness keep her raven gloss ;
Ah, sweeter to be drunk with loss, To dance with death, to beat the ground ;
Than that the victor Hours should scorn
The long result of love, and boast :
* Behold the man that loved and lost, But all he was is overworn.'
OLD Yew, which graspest at the stones
That name the under-lying dead,
Thy fibres net the dreamless head ; Thy roots are wrapt about the bones.
The seasons bring the flower again,
And bring the firstling to the flock ;
And in the dusk of thee, the clock Beats out the little lives of men.
O not for thee the glow, the bloom,
Who changest not in any gale !
Nor branding summer suns avail To touch thy thousand years of gloom.
And gazing on the sullen tree,
Sick for thy stubborn hardihood,
I seem to fail from out my blood, And grow incorporate into thee.