Roden Berkeley Wriothesley Noel

(1834-1894 / England)

Under The Stars - Poem by Roden Berkeley Wriothesley Noel

Ah! what little hearts are ours
To hold the miseries of the world!
Behind our private belts of flowers
We play, nor view to ruin hurled
Our kindred; till for us Death lowers,
And summons from the pleasant bowers.
Dare not forecast the Future - know
The doom that Fate reserves for you!
Look no World-Gorgons in the face!
Grisly madness waits that way:
Only help as help ye may!
We have to pass the loathly place
To reach yon heights of holy day,
Serenely shining far away.
So we justify the Lord,
And kiss the terrible red sword!
For throned in hidden eternal state,
Though wingless, desolate she roam,
The Soul hath chosen all her fate,
Now remembering not the Home,
Whereunto wealthier she will come.
If One who bore the wide world's pain
Heartbroken, blest and trusted God,
I may look up and smile again,
Kiss the plague-enravelled rod,
And follow where the Master trod.
Surely each is kin to all,
And man, a mirror of the whole;
Should worlds, gods, demons, aught appal
Who knows himself a conscious soul?
Give me but time, no bounds may thrall
One who hath God Himself for goal!
Ah, solitudes, immense, profound!
And lonelier solitudes within!
Ye shine, O worlds, in solemn swound;
All the discord, all the din
Of a city's moil and sin
Heard from a tower or higher ground,
Blend to one grand ocean-sound;
So from memories are lost
All we gladly would forget;
Faces white with Death's deep frost
Lose the fever and the fret;
So yonder orbs in darkness met,
Each a silver tranquil ghost,
Lose all of vext and tempest-tost;
By mortal eyes undreamed in day,
Revealed alone to darkling night,
They rest so far, so far away,
I deem their calm and gentle light
For our consoling seems to say,
'Absorbed within the Infinite,
Deforming evils fallen away,
No dishonouring care may stain,
The Ideal only rule and reign!'
Dear places, feelings, thoughts, will go,
Calm revolving words will fail,
But when the stars have ceased to glow,
Abideth One who ne'er may pale,
And all in Him immortal, hale,
Our life, abide; whate'er remove,
Remaineth the Eternal Love;
And surely Love will reunite
Who wander sundered here in night!
Surely Love will lead them home,
However far afeld they roam!

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 22, 2010

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