Ada Cambridge (21 November 1844 – 19 July 1926 / St Gemans, Norfolk)
Another mile—a year
Pass'd by for ever! And the warnings swell
From upper heaven to darkest depths of hell,—
O we are drawing near!
All through the waiting lands
Dim signs and tokens, if unheeded, throng;
We feel them thickening as we pass along,
Holding out fearful hands.
Light! which in love sent down
That tender gleam on Eden's darken'd bowers,
When sin had breathed the blight upon the flowers
Whereof death made his crown:—
Light! which did deign to stamp
The tables on that Arab mountain-crest;—
Light! which, in shrouded glory, once did rest
On Israelitish camp:—
O day! whose dawn was spread,
Golden and clear, on Judaea's terraced hills,—
O shining noon! whose waxèd beauty thrills
Earth and her quick and dead:—
Come to our hearts, we pray!
Through open doors let gracious gleams come in;
Fill us with light and life, and let the sin
And darkness pass away.
Lord, waken us who sleep,
Strengthen the feeble knees and weak hands now;
Teach us, with prayer and work, to measure how
The stealthy minutes creep.
Let not our lamp be dim
When in the night we hear the footsteps fall
Upon our threshold,—let death find us all
Watching in peace for him.
Let us lie down to rest
In surest hope of endless life in store,
With happy reverent hands, that strive no more,
Folded across our breast.
And when the angels come,
And the sharp echo of the herald's cry
Pierces the dark and stillness where we lie
Cold in our sleep, and dumb,—
May we arise, O King!
In bridal garments, beautiful and white;
And do Thou, coming in Thy godly might,
Our crown of glory bring.
Comments about this poem (Advent Hymn by Ada Cambridge )
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