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Oh! never, never can'st thou know
What then for thee the Saviour bore,
The pangs of that mysterious woe
That wrung His frame at every pore,
The weight that press'd upon His brow,
The fever of His bosom's core !
Yes! man for înan perchance may brave
The horrors of the yawning grave;
And friend for friend, or child for sire
Undaunted and unmov'd expire,
From love or piety-or pride,
But who can die as Jesus died ?
Thou soft-flowing Kedron! by thy limpid stream
Our Saviour, at night, when the moon's silver beam
Shone bright on thy waters, would oftentimes stray,
And lose in their murmurs the toils of the day.
How damp were the vapours that fell on His head !
How hard was His pillow ! how humble His bed!
The angels, astonislı’d, grew sad at the sight,
And follow'd their Master with solemn delight.
Oh, garden of Olivet! dear, honour'd spot!
The fame of thy wonders shall ne'er be forgot!
The theme most transporting to seraphs above,
The triumph of sorrow, the triumph of love!
MAD. DE FLEURY.
From Calvary a cry was heard,
A long reiterated cry:
My Saviour ! every mournful word
Bespeaks Thy soul's deep agony.
A horror of deep darkness fell
On Thee, the Immaculate, the Just ;
The congregated hosts of hell
Combined to shake Thy filial trust.
The scourge, the thorns, the deep disgrace,
These Thou could'st bear and not repine ;
But when Jehovah veil'd His face,
Unutterable pangs were Thine.
Let the dumb world her silence break;
Let pealing anthems rend the sky;
Awake, my sluggish soul, awake!
He died, that we may never die !
Lord, on Thy cross I fix my eye ;
If e'er I slight its pure control,
O let that dying, piercing cry
Melt and reclaim my wandering soul !
The Lord of Hosts hath walked
This world of man; the one Almighty sent
His everlasting Son to wear the flesh,
And glorify this mortal human shape :-
And the blind eyes unclos’d to see the Lord ;
And the dumb tongues brake out in songs of praise ;
And the deep grave cast forth its wond’ring dead;
And trembling devils murmured sullen homage.
Yet Him, the meek, the merciful, the just,
Upon the cross His rebel people hung,
And mark'd His dying anguish.
O'er Kedron's stream and Salem's height,
And Olivet's brown steep,
Moves the majestic queen of night,
And throws from heaven her silver light,
And sees the world asleep.
'Tis a religious hour ;-for He,
Who many a grief shall bear
In His own body on the tree,
Is kneeling in Gethsemane
In agony and prayer.
O, holy Father! when the light
Of earthly joys grows dim,
May hope in Christ grow strong and bright
To all who kneel in sorrow's night
In trust and prayer like Him.
A wreath of glory circles still His head-
And yet He kneels-and yet He seems to be
Convulsed with more than human agony :
On His pale brow the drops are large and red
As victim's blood at votive altar shed-
His hands are clasped, His eyes are raised in prayer-
Alas ! and is there strife He cannot bear,
Who calmed the tempest's rage, and raised the dead ?
There is! there is ! for now the powers of hell
Are struggling for the mastery—'tis the hour
When death exerts his last permitted power,
When the dread weight of sin, since Adam fell,
Is visited on Him, who deigned to dwell
A man with men—that He might bear the stroke
Of wrath Divine, and burst the captive's yoke,
But, oh! of that dread strife what words can tell ?
Those-only those—which broke with many a groan
From His full heart—" Oh, Father, take away
The cup of vengeance I must drink to-day ;
Yet, Father, not my will, but Thine, be done !”
It could not pass away-for He alone
Was mighty to endure, and strong to save ;
Nor would Jehovah leave Him in the grave,
Nor could corruption taint His Holy One.
At length the worst is o'er, and Thou art laid
Deep in Thy darksome bed ;
All still and cold beneath yon dreary stone
Thy sacred form is gone ;
Around those lips where power and mercy hung,
The dews of death have clung ;
The dull earth o'er Thee, and Thy foes around, Thou sleep'st a silent corse, in funeral fetters wound.
So buried with our Lord, we'll close our eyes To the decaying world, till angels bid us rise.
Hast thou not, in the lone wood's shade,
Oft seen a lovely flow'r,
Pale, weak, and bending low its head,
Drench'd by the thunder show'r ?
Transplanted thence, and train’d to grow
The sunny garden's pride,
How sweetly did its odours flow,
Diffus'd on every side!
Fair Sharon's Rose thus lonely grew
In scorned Galilee,
And fainted 'neath the gory dew
Of dark Gethsemane.
Now, by the Lord's right hand remov'd
To His own Paradise,
By all admir'd, ador’d, belov'd,
Its fragrance fills the skies.