Edgar Albert Guest

(20 August 1881 - 5 August 1959 / Birmingham / England)

Easter


OUT of the darkness and shadow of death,
Out of the anguish that wells from the tomb,
Into the splendor of spiritual breath,
Now we have burst like a lily in bloom;
Sweetened is sorrow and strengthened is hope,
Death and the grave have been robbed of their sting;
Doubting, despairing, no longer we grope,
Man has been given the courage to sing.

Easter! the birthday of hope and of peace!
Easter! the bulwark of all we believe;
Lo, all our waitings and sad meanings cease,
Death has been shorn of its power to grieve.
See! now a mother, her cheeks wan and white,
Smilingly sinks into slumber most blest;
Her soul unto Heaven is borne through the night,
And she wakes in the morn with her babe at her breast.

Look! from a newly made grave comes a man,
Feeble and bowed by the struggles of life,
'She waits for my coming,' he says, ' and the span
Is but short for me now to the side of my wife.
Though I miss her, I mourn not her going, I know
That she is at rest, and far happier there;
And I wait but the summons when I am to go
To the valley of peace, from the land of despair.'

And this is the meaning of Easter's glad songs,
And this is the reason that Easter is gay;
'He is risen,' we sing, 'He has righted earth's wrongs,
From the mouth of the tomb see the stone rolled away."
Yes, out of the darkness and gloom of the tomb,
He has risen, our Master, our Lord and our King!
And we view not life's end as a signal of doom,
But the birth of new life, and we've courage to sing.

Submitted: Wednesday, August 20, 2014

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