Thus do we walk with her, and
The bond which nature gives,
Thinking that our remembrance, though unspoken,
May reach her where she lives.
Not as a child shall we again
For when with raptures wild
In our embraces we again enfold her,
She will not be a child—
But a fair maiden, in her Father’s
Clothed with celestial grace,
And beautiful with all the soul’s expansion
Shall we behold her face.
And though at times impetuous
And anguish long suppressed,
The swelling heart heaves, moaning like the ocean,
That can not be at rest—
We will be patient, and assuage
We can not wholly stay;
By silence sanctifying, not concealing,
The grief that must have way.
FROM THE GOLDEN LEGEND.
SCENE.—The Chamber of GOTTLIEB and URSULA.—Midnight.—ELSIE standing by their bedside weeping.
GOTTLIEB. The wind is roaring; the rushing rain
Is loud upon the roof and window-pane,
As if the wild Huntsman of Rodenstein,
Boding evil to me and mine,
Were abroad to-night with his ghostly train!
In the brief lulls of the tempest wild,
The dogs howl in the yard; and hark!
Some one is sobbing in the dark,
Here in the chamber.
ELSIE. It is I.
URSULA. Elsie! What ails thee, my poor child?
ELSIE. I am disturbed and much distressed,
In thinking our dear Prince must die;
I can not close my eyes, nor rest.
GOTTLIEB. What wouldst thou? In the Power
His healing lies, not in our own;
It is in the hand of God alone.
ELSIE. Nay, He has put it into mine,
And into my heart.
GOTTLIEB. Thy words are wild.
URSULA. What dost thou mean? my child! my child!
ELSIE. That for our dear Prince Henry’s
I will myself the offering make,
And give my life to purchase his.
URSULA. Am I still dreaming, or awake?
Thou speakest carelessly of death,
And yet thou knowest not what it is.
ELSIE. ’Tis the cessation of our breath.
Silent and motionless we lie;
And no one knoweth more than this.
I saw our little Gertrude die;
She left off breathing, and no more
I smoothed the pillow beneath her head.
She was more beautiful than before.
Like violets faded were her eyes;
By this we knew that she was dead.
Through the open window looked the skies
Into the chamber where she lay,
And the wind was like the sound of wings,
As if angels came to bear her away.
Ah! when I saw and felt these things,
I found it difficult to stay;
I longed to die, as she had died,
And go forth with her, side by side.
The saints are dead, the martyrs dead,
And Mary, and our Lord; and I
Would follow in humility
The way by them illumined.