Of lassitude and pain:
And here, at last, is sleep with silent gifts,—
Kind sleep, the tender nurse who lifts
The soul grown weary of the waking world,
And lays it, with its thoughts all furled,
Its fears forgotten, and its passions still,
On the deep bosom of the Eternal Will.
THREE PRAYERS FOR SLEEP AND WAKING
Ere thou sleepest gently lay
Every troubled thought away:
Put off worry and distress
As thou puttest off thy dress:
Drop thy burden and thy care
In the quiet arms of prayer.
Lord, Thou knowest how I live,
All I’ve done amiss forgive:
All of good I’ve tried to do,
Strengthen, bless, and carry through,
All I love in safety keep,
While in Thee I fall asleep.
If slumber should forsake
Thy pillow in the dark,
Fret not thyself to mark
How long thou liest awake.
There is a better way;
Let go the strife and strain,
Thine eyes will close again,
If thou wilt only pray.
Lord, Thy peaceful gift restore,
Give my body sleep once more:
While I wait my soul will rest
Like a child upon Thy breast.
Ere thou risest from thy bed,
Speak to God Whose wings were spread
O’er thee in the helpless night:
Lo, He wakes thee now with light!
Lift thy burden and thy care
In the mighty arms of prayer.
Lord, the newness of this day
Calls me to an untried way:
Let me gladly take the road,
Give me strength to bear my load,
Thou my guide and helper be—
I will travel through with Thee.
The Mission Inn, California, Easter, 1913.
PORTRAIT AND REALITY
If on the closed curtain of my sight
My fancy paints thy portrait far away,
I see thee still the same, by night or day;
Crossing the crowded street, or moving bright
’Mid festal throngs, or reading by the light
Of shaded lamp some friendly poet’s lay,
Or shepherding the children at their play,—
The same sweet self, and my unchanged delight.
But when I see thee near, I recognize
In every dear familiar way some strange
Perfection, and behold in April guise
The magic of thy beauty that doth range
Through many moods with infinite surprise,—
Never the same, and sweeter with each change.
THE WIND OF SORROW