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Let them feel, that this cold metallic motion

Is not all the life God fashions or reveals ;
Let them prove their living souls against the notion

That they live in you, or under you, O wheels!
Still, all day, the iron wheels go onward,

Grinding life down from its mark; And the children's souls, which God is calling sunward,

Spin on blindly in the dark.

Now tell the poor young children, O my brothers,

To look up to Him, and pray;
So the blessed One who blesseth all the others,

Will bless them another day.
They answer, “Who is God that He should hear us,

While the rushing of the iron wheels is stirred ?
When we sob aloud, the human creatures near us

Pass by, hearing not, or answer not a word.
And we hear not (for the wheels in their resounding)

Strangers speaking at the door:
Is it likely God, with angels singing round Him,

Hears our weeping any more?

"Two words, indeed, of praying we remember,

And at midnight's hour of harm,
“Our Father,” looking upward in the chamber,

We say softly for a charm.
We know no other words except “Our Father,"

And we think that, in some pause of angels' song, God may pluck them with the silence sweet to gather,

And hold both within His right hand which is strong. “Our Father," if He heard us, He would surely

(For they call Him good and mild) Answer, smiling down the steep world very purely,

“Come and rest with me, my child!”

'But no,' say the children, weeping faster,

“He is speechless as a stone : And they tell us, of His image is the master

Who commands us to work on.

Go to!' say the children,-up in Heaven,

Dark, wheel-like, turning clouds are all we find. Do not mock us; grief has made us unbelieving ;

We look up for God, but tears have made us blind.' Do you hear the children weeping and disproving,

O my brothers, what ye preach?
For God's possible is taught by His world's loving,

And the children doubt of each.

And well may the children weep before you !

They are weary ere they run;
They have never seen the sunshine, nor the glory

Which is brighter than the sun.
They know the grief of man, without its wisdom,

They sink in man's despair, without its calm;
Are slaves, without the liberty in Christdom,

Are martyrs, by the pang without the palm : Are worn as if with age, yet unretrievingly

The harvest of its memories cannot reap, Are orphans of the earthly love and heavenly.

Let them weep! Let them weep!

They look up with their pale and sunken faces,

And their look is dread to see,
For they mind you of their angels in high places,

With eyes turned on Deity.
‘How long,' they say, “how long, O cruel nation,

Will you stand, to move the world, on a child's heart,Stifle down, with a mailed heel its palpitation,

And tread onward, to your throne amid the mart?
Our blood splashes upward, O gold-heaper,

And your purple shows your path!
But the child's sob in the silence curses deeper,

Than the strong man in his wrath.'


Born 1819. Died 1861.


COME back, come back, behold with straining mast,

And swelling sail, behold her steaming fast;
With one new sun to see her voyage o'er,
With morning light to touch her native shore.

Come back, come back!

Come back, come back, while westward labouring by,
With sail-less yards, a bare black hulk we fly.
See how the gale we fight with, sweeps her back,
To her lost home, on our forsaken track.

Come back, come back!

Come back, come back, across the flying foam,
We hear faint far-off voices call us home.
Come back, ye seem to say; ye seek in vain ;
We went, we sought, and homeward turned again.

Come back, come back !

Come back, come back; and whither back or why?
To fan quenched hopes, forsaken schemes to try;
Walk the old fields; pace the familiar street ;
Dream with the idlers, with the bards compete.

Come back, come back!

Come back ; come back, and whither and for what?
To finger idly some old Gordian knot,
Unskilled to sunder, and too weak to cleave,
And with much toil attain to half-believe.

Come back, come back !

Come back, come back; yea back, indeed, do go
Sighs panting thick, and tears that want to flow;
Fond fluttering hopes upraise their useless wings,
And wishes idly struggle in the strings ;

Come back, come back!

Come back, come back; more eager than the breeze,
The flying fancies sweep across the seas,
And lighter far than ocean's flying foam,
The heart's fond message hurries to its home.

Come back, come back !

Come back, come back ! Back flies the foam ; the hoisted flag streams back ; The long smoke wavers on the homeward track, Back fly with winds things which the winds obey, The strong ship follows its appointed way.



IT fortifies my soul to know

That, though I perish, Truth is so :
That, howsoe'er I stray and range,
Whate'er I do, Thou dost not change.
I steadier step when I recall
That, if I slip, Thou dost not fall.


CAY not, the struggle nought availeth,

The labour and the wounds are vain,
The enemy faints not, nor faileth,

And as things have been they remain.

If hopes were dupes, fears may be liars ;

It may be, in yon smoke concealed,
Your comrades chase e'en now the fliers,

And, but for you, possess the field.

For while the tired waves, vainly breaking,

Seem here no painful inch to gain,
Far back, through creeks and inlets making,

Comes silent, flooding in, the main,

And not by eastern windows only,

When daylight comes, comes in the light,
In front, the sun climbs slow, how slowly,

But westward, look, the land is bright.


Come home, come home, and where is home for me,

Whose ship is driving o'er the trackless sea ?
To the frail bark here plunging on its way,
To the wild waters, shall I turn and say
To the plunging bark, or to the salt sea foam,

You are my home?

Fields once I walked in, faces once I knew,
Familiar things so old my heart believed them true,
These far, far back, behind me lie, before
The dark clouds mutter, and the deep seas roar,
And speak to them that 'neath and o'er them roam

No words of home.

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