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Ye hermits blest, ye holy maids,
The nearest heaven on earth,
Free from rude care and mirth;
The secret lore of rural things,
Say, when in pity ye have gazed
On the wreathed smoke afar,
Hung, hiding sun and star,
To the green earth and open sky,
But Love's a flower that will not die
For lack of leafy screen,
That ne'er saw vernal green.
Even in this crowded wilderness,
There are in this loud stirring tide
Of human care and crime,
Of the everlasting chime;
Through dusky lane and wrangling mart, Plying their daily task with busier feet, Because their secret souls a holy strain repeat.
How sweet to them, in such brief rest
As thronging cares afford,
To where their gracious Lord,
Spake, and was heard by fell disease
At once he rose, and left his gold;
His treasure and his heart
Earth and her idols part;
Shall sit, and floods unceasing pour
Nor can ye not delight to think
Where he vouchsafed to eat,
From touch of sinner's meat ;
What worldly hearts and hearts impure
Went with him through the rich man's door; That we might learn of him lost souls to love, And view his least and worst with hope to meet
These gracious lines shed gospel light
On Mammon's gloomiest cells,
The tide of sunrise swells,
Are mantled with a golden cloud, And to wise hearts this certain hope is given, “No mist that man may raise, shall hide the eye
And oh! if even on Babel shine
Such gleams of Paradise,
Who day by day arise
The work of God untouched by man?
SAINT SIMON AND SAINT JUDE'S DAY.
COLLECT. O Almighty God, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head corner stone; grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable unto thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
As at the first, by two and two
His herald saints the Saviour sent
Where he to shine in mercy meant ;
So evermore he deems his name
Best honored and his way prepared,
He sees his servants duly paired.
He loves when age and youth are met,
Fervent old age and youth serene,
For sacred song, joy's golden mean.
He loves when some clear soaring mind
Is drawn by mutual piety
Who in life's shadiest covert lie.
Or if perchance a saddened heart
That once was gay and felt the spring, Cons slowly o’er its altered part,
In sorrow and remorse to sing,
Thy gracious care will send that way
Some spirit full of glee, yet taught To bear the sight of dull decay,
And nurse it with all pitying thought ;
Cheerful as soaring lark, and mild
As evening blackbird's full-toned lay, When the relenting sun has smiled
Bright through a whole December day.
These are the tones to brace and cheer
The lonely watcher of the fold,
When visions fade, and hearts grow cold.
How timely then a comrade's song
Comes floating on the mountain air, And bids thee yet be bold and strong Fancy may die, but Faith is there.