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I bless thee that thou speakest

Thus to an humble child; The God of Jacob calls to me

In gentle tones and mild; Thine enemies before thy face

Are scattered in dismay: Speak, Lord, thy servant heareth,

And heareth to obey.



"Contra vim MORTIS Non est medicamen in hortis."

I've stood before thee all my days,

Have ministered to thee;
But in the hour of darkness first

Thou speakest unto me.
And now the night appeareth

More beautiful than day:
Speak, Lord, thy servant heareth,

And heareth to obey.

He is the despots' Despot. All must bide,

Later or soon, the message of his might; Princes and potentates their heads must hide,

Touched by the awful sigil of his right; Beside the Kaiser he at eve doth wait And pours a potion in his cup of state;

The stately Queen his bidding must obey;

No keen-eyed Cardinal shall him affray; And to the Dame that wantoneth he saith

“Let be, Sweetheart, to junket and to play . ." There is no king more terrible than Death.

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The lusty Lord, rejoicing in his pride,

He draweth down; before the armed Knight
With jingling bridle-rein he still doth ride;

He crosseth the strong Captain in the fight;
He beckons the grave Elder from debate,
He hales the Abbot by his shaven pate,

Nor for the Abbess' wailing will delay;

No bawling Mendicant shall say him nay;
E’en to the pyx the Priest he followeth,

Nor can the Leech his chilling finger stay
There is no king more terrible than Death.
All things must bow to him. And woe betide

The Wine-bibber,--the Roisterer by night;
Him the feast-master, many bouts defied,

Him 'twixt the pledging and the cup shall smite; Woe to the Lender at usurious rate, The hard Rich Man, the hireling Advocate;

Woe to the Judge that selleth right for pay:

Woe to the Thief that like a beast of prey With creeping tread the traveler hurryeth:

These, in their sin, the sudden sword shall slay. There is no king more terrible than Death. He hath no pity,-nor will be denied.

When the low hearth is garnished and bright,
Grimly he flingeth the dim portal wide,

And steals the Infant in the Mother's sight;
He hath no pity for the scorned of fate:-
He spares not Lazarus lying at the gate,

Nay, nor the Blind that stumbleth as he may;

Nay, the tired Ploughman,-at the sinking ray, — In the last furrow,-feels an icy breath,

And knows a hand hath turned the team astray. There is no king more terrible than Death.


In this glad time of Spring
Nature doth garlands bring,

Crowning her joys.
All that was seared with frost,
Buried, and mourned for lost,
With a new Pentecost,
Flame-touched, doth rise.

-Hymn for a Spring Festival.

He hath no pity. For the new-made Bride,

Blithe with the promise of her life's delight, That wanders gladly by her Husband's side,

He with the clatter of his drum doth fright; He scares the Virgin at the convent gate. The Maid half-won, the Lover passionate;

He hath no grace for weakness or decay;

The tender Wife, the Widow bent and gray,The feeble Sire whose footsteps faltereth,

All these he leadeth by the lonely way There is no king more terrible than Death.

When fear's abroad on sea, on plain, on lake,
When o'er the sun is drawn a pall opaque,

When wounded patriots fall, with spent canteens

And shattered swords, upon the wrecked fascines, When everything that is but injureth, Then he applies his balm, that soothes and

cleans: There is no friend more generous than Death.



Youth, for whose ear and monishing, of late
I sang of Prodigals and lost estate,

Have thou thy joy of living and be gay;

But know not less that there must come a day, — Aye, and perchance e'en now it hasteneth, –

When thine own heart shall speak to thee and

Yea, in despite of vessel weakly manned,

Amid the lightning, wind, or hail, or rain,
We may with confidence awaiting stand,

Yea, mock at all disaster we may deign,
And our contempt for things may bravely slake,
While all things evil o'er our heads do break:

We have a friend, o'er seers, or kings, or deans,

Who, though the world to chaos drear careens, Yet with us lingereth and comforteth,

And with his touch our souls anew impregns: There is no friend more generous than Death.


There is no king more terrible than Death.




All wants and woes by him are known and

spanned; His mercy knoweth never halt or wane. He hath no choice; the lowly and the grand

Alike win answer praying at his fane. His touch is light as 'twere the snow's soft fake, But O! no other touch such change can make, Such change from wintry wastes to summer

greens, From wails of woe to pleasure's highest pæans, As that light touch he giveth when he saith:

“Go where nor gloom nor sorrow intervenes!” There is no friend more generous than Death.

He is the Friend of friends. In his chill hand

Is cooling for the fever and the pain
That fall on humans, who on earth are banned

To strive against all occult powers in vain.
In his gaunt arms is rest from toil and ache,
Is sleep so sweet the sleeper ne'er would wake,

Is peace for warring kings and weeping queens,

Is dreamland's glory after earth's drear scenes, Is freedom from the fluttering, pain-filled breath,

Is love, is joy, instead of hate's gangrenes: There is no friend more generous than Death.


Friend, Death is our friend! The weary.he doth

take Where nevermore hearts toil, or long, or quake, Where peace the soul from earth and sorrow

weans, Where being ever greater glory gleans, Where, free from dross, the immortal reveleth

O'er flowerful meads in heaven's wide demesnes: There is no friend more generous than Death.


Sweet gifts hath he for all who make demand:

The weary wealthy, they with mark of Cain Upon the forehead, they of famine's band,

All they who glare and rant in glee insane, They who in flames faint at the torturing stake, Through hatred or for holy conscience' sake,

They who deplore the deed that life demeans,

They who have tired of earth's illusive sheens, Come suppliant to this wraith who wavereth,

And he, assenting, to their pleading leans: There is no friend more generous than Death.

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When pestilence is lowering o'er the land,

When horror pallid, grisly, sole doth reign, When foes invade with sword and ruthless brand,

When grief doth every aching heart o'erstrain,

Hail, Freedom! Thy bright crest
And gleaming shield, thrice blest,

Mirror the glories of a world thine own!
Hail, heaven-born Peace! Our sight,
Led by thy gentle light,

Shows us thy paths with deathless flowers strown;

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Sweet is the toil of peace,
Sweet the year's rich increase

To loyal men who live by Freedom's laws;
And in war's fierce alarms
God gives stout hearts and arms

To freemen sworn to save a rightful cause.
Fear none, trust God, maintain the right,
And triumph in unbroken union's peerless might!


Welded in war's fierce flame,
Forged on the hearth of fame,

The sacred Constitution was ordained;
Tried in the fire of time,
Tempered by woes sublime,

An age has passed and left it yet unstained,
God grant its glories still may shine
While ages fade forgotten in time's slow decline !

By the merest chance, in the twilight gloom

In the orchard path he met me;
In the tall, wet grass, with its faint perfume,
And I tried to pass, but he made no room,

Oh I tried, but he would not let me.
So I stood and blushed till the grass grew red,

With my face bent down above it, While he took my hand as he whispering said, (How the clover lifted each pink, sweet head, To listen to all that my lover said;

Oh, the clover in bloom, I love it!)

Honor the few who shared
Freedom's first fight, and dared

To face war's desperate tide at the full flood;
Who fell on hard-won ground,
And into Freedom's wound
Poured the sweet balsam of their brave hearts'

blood, They fell, but o'er their glorious grave Floats free the banner of the cause they died to

In the high, wet grass went the path to hide,

And the low, wet leaves hung over;
But I could not pass upon either side,
For I found myself when I vainly tried,

In the arms of my steadfast lover.
And he held me there and he raised my head,

While he closed the path before me, And he looked down into my eyes and said, (How the leaves bent down from the boughs o'er

head, To listen to all that my lover said,

Oh, the leaves hanging lowly o'er me !)


In radiance heavenly fair
Floats on the peaceful air

That flag, that never stooped from victory's

Those stars that softly gleam,
Those stripes that o'er us stream,

In war's grand agony were sanctified
A holy standard, pure and free,
To light the home of peace or blaze in victory.

Had he moved aside but a little way,

I could surely then have passed him; And he knew I never could wish to stay, And would not have heard what he had to say,

Could I only aside have cast him.

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