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Swells in his voice, he knows not where to end; Like one discoursing of an absent friend.
But there are moments which he calls his own. Then, never less alone than when alone, Those that he loved so long and sees no more, Loved and still loves-not dead—but gone before, He gathers round him; and revives at will Scenes in his life-that breathe enchantment stillThat come not now at dreary intervalsBut where a light as from the Blessed falls, A light such guests bring ever-pure and holyLapping the soul in sweetest melancholy! -Ah then less willing (nor the choice condemn) To live with others than to think on them!
And now behold him up the hill ascending, Memory and Hope like evening-stars attending; Sustained, excited, till his course is run, By deeds of virtue done or to be done. When on his couch he sinks at length to rest, Those by his counsel saved, his power redressed, Those by the World shunned ever as unblest, At whom the rich man's dog growls from the gate, But whom he sought out, sitting desolate, Come and stand round—the widow with her child, As when she first forgot her tears and smiled! They, who watch by him, see not; but he sees, Sees and exults – Were ever dreams like these? They, who watch by him, hear not; but he hears, And Earth recedes, and Heaven itself appears !
'Tis past! That hand we grasped, alas, in vain! Nor shall we look upon his face again! But to his closing eyes, for all were there, Nothing was wanting; and, through many a year We shall remember with a fond delight The words so precious which we heard to-night; His parting, though awhile our sorrow flows, Like setting suns or music at the close!
Then was the drama ended. Not till then, So full of chance and change the lives of men, Could we pronounce him happy. Then secure From pain, from grief, and all that we endure, He slept in peace—say rather soared to Heaven, Upborne from Earth by Him to whom 'tis given In his right hand to hold the golden key That opes the portals of Eternity. - When by a good man's grave I muse alone, Methinks an Angel sits upon the stone; Like those of old, on that thrice-hallowed night, Who sate and watched in raiment heavenly bright; And, with a voice inspiring joy not fear, Says, pointing upward, “ Know, he is not here; He is risen!"
But the day is almost spent ; And stars are kindling in the firmament, To us how silent—though like ours perchance Busy and full of life and circumstance; Where some the paths of Wealth and Power pursue, Of Pleasure some, of Happiness a few;
And, as the sun goes round—a sun not ours-