When tears are spent, and then art
With ghosts of blessings gone,
Think thou art taken from the cross, and laid
In Jesus’ burial shade;
Take Moses’ rod, the rod of prayer, and call
Out of the rocky wall
The fount of holy blood; and lift on high
Thy grovelling soul that feels so desolate and dry.
Prisoner of Hope thou art—look
up and sing
In hope of promised spring.
As in the pit his father’s darling lay
Beside the desert way,
And knew not how, but knew his god would save
E’en from that living grave,
So, buried with our Lord, we’ll chose our eyes
To the decaying world, till Angels bid us rise.
And as they were afraid, and bowed down their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen. St. Luke xxiv. 5, 6.
Oh! day of days! shall hearts set free
No “minstrel rapture” find for thee?
Thou art this Sun of other days,
They shine by giving back thy rays:
Enthroned in thy sovereign sphere,
Thou shedd’st thy light on all the year;
Sundays by thee more glorious break,
An Easter Day in every week:
And week days, following in their train,
The fulness of thy blessing gain,
Till all, both resting soil employ,
Be one Lord’s day of holy joy.
Then wake, my soul, to high desires,
And earlier light thine altar fires:
The World some hours is on her way,
Nor thinks on thee, thou blessed day:
Or, if she think, it is in scorn:
The vernal light of Easter morn
To her dark gaze no brighter seems
Than Reason’s or the Law’s pale beams.
“Where is your Lord?” she scornful asks:
“Where is His hire? we know his tasks;
Sons of a King ye boast to be:
Let us your crowns and treasures see.”
We in the words of Truth reply,
(An angel brought them from this sky,)
“Our crown, our treasure is not here,
’Tis stored above the highest sphere:
“Methinks your wisdom guides amiss,
To seek on earth a Christian’s bliss;
We watch not now the lifeless stone;
Our only Lord is risen and gone.”
Yet e’en the lifeless stone is dear
For thoughts of Him who late lay here;
And the base world, now Christ hath died,
Ennobled is and glorified.
No more a charnel-house, to fence
The relics of lost innocence,
A vault of ruin and decay;
Th’ imprisoning stone is rolled away:
’Tis now a cell, where angels use
To come and go with heavenly news,
And in the ears of mourners say,
“Come, see the place where Jesus lay:”
’Tis now a fane, where Love can find
Christ everywhere embalmed and shined:
Aye gathering up memorials sweet,
Where’er she sets her duteous feet.