Frances Anne Kemble

(27 November 1809 - 15 January 1893 / London, England)

The Prayer Of A Lonely Heart - Poem by Frances Anne Kemble

I am alone—oh be thou near to me,
Great God! from whom the meanest are not far.
Not in presumption of the daring spirit,
Striving to find the secrets of itself,
Make I my weeping prayer; in the deep want
Of utter loneliness, my God! I seek thee;
If the worm may creep up to thy fellowship,
Or dust, instinct with yearning, rise towards thee.
I have no fellow, Father! of my kind;
None that be kindred, none companion to me,
And the vast love, and harmony, and brotherhood,
Of the dumb creatures thou hast made below me,
Vexes my soul with its own bitter lot.
Around me grow the trees, each by the other;
Innumerable leaves, each like the other,
Whisper and breathe, and live and move together.
Around me spring the flowers; each rosy cup
Hath sisters leaning their fair cheeks against it.
The birds fly all above me; not alone,
But coupled in free fellowship, or mustering
A joyous band, sweeping in companies
The wide blue fields between the clouds;—the clouds

Troop in society, each on the other
Shedding, like sympathy, reflected light.
The waves, a multitude, together run
To the great breast of the receiving sea:
Nothing but hath its kind, its company,
O God! save me alone!—then, let me come,
Good Father! to thy feet, when even as now,
Tears, that no human hand is near to wipe,
O'erbrim my eyes, oh wipe them, thou, my Father!
When in my heart the stores of its affections,
Piled up unused, locked fast, are like to burst
The fleshly casket, that may not contain them,
Let me come nigh to thee;—accept them thou,
Dear Father!—Fount of Love! Compassionate God!
When in my spirit burns the fire, the power,
That have made men utter the words of angels,
And none are near to bid me speak and live:
Hearken, O Father! maker of my spirit!
God of my soul, to thee I will outpour
The hymns resounding through my troubled mind,
The sighs and sorrows of my lonely heart,
The tears and weeping of my weary eyes:
Be thou my fellow, glorious, gracious God!
And fit me for such fellowship with thee!

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Poem Submitted: Monday, September 6, 2010

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