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Yet can I not persuade me thou art dead,

Or that thy corse corrupts in earth's dark womb,

Or that thy beauties lie in wormy bed,

Hid from the world in a low delved tomb;

Could Heaven for pity thee so strictly doom?

O no, for something in thy face did shine
Above mortality, that show'd thou wast divine.

O! wert thou of the golden winged host,
Who having clad thyself in human weed
To earth, from thy prefixed seat didst post,
And after short abode fly back with speed,
As if to show what creatures Heaven doth breed;

Thereby to set the hearts of men on fire
To scorn the sordid world, and unto Heaven aspire?

Then thou the mother of so sweet a child,
Her false imagin'd loss cease to lament,
And wisely learn to curb thy sorrows wild;
Think what a present thou to God hast sent,
And render Him with patience what He lent:

This if thou do, He will an offering give, That till the world's last end shall make thy name to live.

J. Milton



Thou art gone to the grave! but we will not deplore

thee, Though sorrows and darkness encompass the tomb, The Saviour hath past through its portal before

thee, And the lamp of His love is thy guide through the gloom.

Thou art gone to the grave! we no longer behold

thee, Nor tread the rough path of the world by thy side; But the wide arms of mercy are spread to enfold

thee, And sinners may hope, since the Sinless has died.

Thou art gone to the grave! and, its mansion forsaking,

Perchance thy weak spirit in doubt linger'd long;

But the sunshine of Heav'n beam'd bright on thy waking,

And the sound which thou heard'st was the Seraphim's song.

Thou art gone to the grave! but 'twere vain to

deplore thee, When God was thy ransom, thy Guardian, and

Guide; He gave thee, He took thee, and He will restore

thee, And death hath no sting, since the Saviour has died.

Bishop Heber



Brother, thou art gone before us,
And thy saintly soul is flown

Where tears are wiped from every eye,
And sorrow is unknown.


From the burden of the flesh,

And from care and sin releas'd, Where the wicked cease from troubling,

And the weary are at rest.

The toilsome way thou'st travell'd o'er,

And borne the heavy load; But Christ hath taught thy languid feet

To reach His blest abode; Thou'rt sleeping now, like Lazarus,

Upon his Father's breast, Where the wicked cease from troubling,

And the weary are at rest.

Sin can never taint thee now,

Nor doubt thy faith assail,
Nor thy meek trust in Jesus Christ

And the Holy Spirit fail;
And there thou'rt sure to meet the good,

Whom on earth thou lovedst best, Where the wicked cease from troubling,

And the weary are at rest.

"Earth to earth," and " dust to dust,"

The solemn Priest hath said;
So we lay the turf above thee now,

And we seal thy narrow bed:
But thy spirit, brother, soars away

Among the faithful blest, Where the wicked cease from troubling,

And the weary are at rest.

And when the Lord shall summon us

Whom thou hast left behind,
May we, untainted by the world,

As sure a welcome find;
May each, like thee, depart in peace,

To be a glorious guest,
Where the wicked cease from troubling,

And the weary are at rest.

H. H. Milman



Receive him, earth, unto thine harbouring shrine;

In thy soft tranquil bosom let him rest; These limbs of man I to thy care consign,

And trust the noble fragments to thy breast.

This house was once the mansion of a soul
Brought into life by its Creator's breath;

Wisdom did once this living mass control;
And Christ was there enshrined, who conquers

Cover this body to thy care consign'd;

Its Maker shall not leave it in the grave; But His own lineaments shall bear in mind, And shall recall the image which He gave.

/. Williams, from Prudentius



O miserable man,
Who hath all the world to friend,
Yet dares not in prosperity
Remember his latter end!

But happy man, whate'er
His earthly lot may be,
Who looks on death as the angel
That shall set his spirit free,
And bear it to his heritage
Of immortality.

R. Southey



The gathering of the Dead

The day is cloudy; it should be so:

And the clouds in flocks to the eastward go;

For the world may not see the glory there,

Where Christ and His Saints are met in the air.

There is a stir among all things round,

Like the shock of an earthquake underground,

And there is music in the motion,

As soft and deep as a summer ocean.

All things that sleep awake to-day,

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