“Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter, passing by, might overshadow some of them.”
Mid the thronged bustle of the city street,
In the hot hush of noon,
I wait, with folded hands and nerveless feet.
Surely He will come soon.
Surely the Healer will not pass me by,
But listen to my cry.
Long are the hours in which I lie and wait,
Heavy the load I bear;
But He will come ere evening. Soon or late
I shall behold Him there;
Shall hear His dear voice, all the clangor through;
“What wilt thou that I do?”
“If Thou but wilt, Lord, Thou canst make
Thus shall I answer swift.
And He will touch me, as He walks serene;
And I shall rise and lift
This couch, so long my prison-house of pain,
And be made whole again.
He lingers yet. But lo! a hush, a hum.
The multitudes press on
After some leader. Surely He is come!
He nears me; He is gone!
Only His shadow reached me, as He went;
Yet here I rest content.
In that dear shadow, like some healing spell,
A heavenly patience lay;
Its balm of peace enwrapped me as it fell;
My pains all fled away,—
The weariness, the deep unrest of soul;
I am indeed “made whole.”
It is enough, Lord, though Thy face divine
Was turned to other men.
Although no touch, no questioning voice was mine,
Thou wilt come once again;
And, if Thy shadow brings such bliss to me,
What must Thy presence be?
They know the time to
The fairy clocks strike their inaudible hour
In field and woodland, and each punctual flower
Bows at the signal an obedient head
And hastes to bed.
The pale Anemone
Glides on her way with scarcely a good-night;
The Violets tie their purple nightcaps tight;
Hand clasped in hand, the dancing Columbines,
In blithesome lines,
Drop their last courtesies,
Flit from the scene, and couch them for their rest;
The Meadow Lily folds her scarlet vest
And hides it ‘neath the Grasses’ lengthening green;
Fair and serene,
Her sister Lily floats
On the blue pond, and raises golden eyes
To court the golden splendor of the skies,—
The sudden signal comes, and down she goes
To find repose,
In the cool depths below,
A little later, and the Asters blue
Depart in crowds, a brave and cheery crew;
While Golden-rod, still wide awake and gay,
Turns him away,
Furls his bright parasol,
And, like a little hero, meets his fate.
The Gentians, very proud to sit up late,
Next follow. Every Fern is tucked and set