The Infant-Victim's choice.
As moonbeam on a mountain-mere
The Mother's face was white;
Her eyes were stars, and every tear
Gave lustre to their light.
Methinks a blushing moon looked down
Upon that manger-bed,
And wove a mystic glory-crown
Around the Sleeper's head.
The silence issues in a song,
It rises and it swells;
E'en than the lark's more blithe and strong,
Sweeter than Philomel's,
His Church's anthem loud and long
The Victim's triumph tells.
In boyhood's sorrow-shadowed days,
Which memory recalls to-day,
In many moods and many ways,
My yearning heart would pray.
'T was holy ground where'er I set
My feet, God's shrine was everywhere;
But this I scarcely knew as yet--
_Christ is His Father's Prayer_.
God ever seeks His children's bliss,
Appeals to them; and, rightly heard,
The music of creation is
The echo of His Word.
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