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WE have lost him; he is gone!
Break not, O woman's heart, but still endure;
May all love,
His love unseen but felt, o'ershadovv thee,
SWEET maiden, for so calm a life
We miss thee in thy place at school,
Where violets, by the reedy pool
Where thou, a true and gentle guide,
With all an elder sister's pride,
And if we miss, O who may speak
The pallet where thy fresh young cheek
How many a tearful, longing look,
In silence seeks thee yet, Where in its own familiar nook
Thy fireside chair is set .
And oft, when little voices dim,
Are feeling for the note,
And, wavering, wildly float,
Comes gushing o'er a sudden thought
Of her who led the strain, How oft such music home she brought,—
But ne'er shall bring again.
O, say not so! the spring-tide air
Who knows but heavenly carols there
Who knows how near, each holy hour,
The pure and child-like dead
The mourner's prayer is said?
And He who willed thy tender frame
(O, stern but sweet decree !) Should wear the martyr's robe of flame,—
He hath prepared for thee
A garland in that region bright
Tinged faintly with such golden light
Nay, doubt it not: His tokens sure
The wasting pain might not endure,
Even as we read of saints of yore:
To crave one quiet slumber more
FOOTSTEPS OF ANGELS
WHEN the hours of Day are numbered,
Ere the evening lamps are lighted,
Shadows from the fitful fire-light
Then the forms of the departed
Enter at the open door; The beloved, the true-hearted,
Come to visit me once more;
He, the young and strong, who cherished
Noble longings for the strife,
Weary with the march of life!
They, the holy ones and weakly,
Who the cross of suffering bore, Folded their pale hands so meekly,
Spake with us on earth no more!
And with them the Being Beauteous,
Who unto my youth was given, More than all things else to love me,
And is now a saint in heaven.
With a slow and noiseless footstep
Comes that messenger divine, Takes the vacant chair beside me,
Lays her gentle hand in mine.
And she sits and gazes at me
With those deep and tender eyes, Like the stars, so still and saint-like,
Looking downward from the skies.
Uttered not, yet comprehended
Is the spirit's voiceless prayer, Soft rebukes, in blessings ended,
Breathing from her lips of air.
O, though oft depressed and lonely,
All my fears are laid aside, If I but remember only
Such as these have lived and died!
H. W. Longfellow