The Soul’s Oratorio.

Psalm ciii. I.
And all that is within me”—greater far1
Than what’s outlying in the world within,2
Where life and death still wage relentless war,3
The strife of grace and sin ;4
’Tis the unbounded kingdom of the soul5
Thoughts’ trackless realm with plan and purpose rife,6
And myriad memories, like waves, that roll7
Up the grey strands of life ;8
The far yet ever-present hills of hope,9
Whence gush the streams exhaling as they run,10
Green slopes where climbs the heart, and from the top11
Just sees its sun go down ;12
And far-down regions, where in lonely graves13
Youth’s dreams lie buried, once too fair—too brief14
What time the fond heart, dove-like, skimmed the waves,15
And brought home—but a “ leaf ;”16
The workings of the heart which cannot die17
The outshoots of the brain—like lightning’s glare18
Some flash to earth, while others, streaming high,19
Like north-lights shine in air.20
O boundless clime ! shut up in straitest cell,21
Concentred realm, so great, and yet so small,22
Where time and thought, both infinite, do dwell,23
And earth and heaven and all.24
Descend, O God, to animate—inspire25
Warm with Thy breath of love this sentient frame,26
Till “ all that is within me,” touched by fire,27
Shall wake to praise Thy name.28
Spirit, come down—as on a high-strung lyre, 29
Strike with Thy hand of power—breathe wide, abroad,30
Till from the depths, of life each trembling wire31
Shall vibrate up to God.32
Give Grief her mournful harp, that she may string,33
Its chords to sound her sense of errors past ;34
Give Joy its clashing bells, and let them swing35
Their sweetness on the blast.36
Give Faith a lark-like song, still warbling higher,37
Up-soaring from her sod through fields of day ;38
And Love, a tenderer note, with strength to inspire39
Each struggler on his way.40
Let Memory’s flute, with its rich dying fall,41
Bring back angelic visits long gone by ;42
And give to Hope its thrilling bugle call,43
Up-echoing to the sky.44
Let Patience have her lute, for wandering still45
In search of rest, with retrospective eye46
She loves to climb the steeps of Calvary’s hill,47
And watch her Saviour die.48
Seize on our Fancy, make it all Thine own,49
Till like some organ pealing high and wide,50
Each sounding stop, and swell, and dulcet tone,51
To Thee be sanctified.52
On earth’s dark suffering pour Thy healing balm,53
May the heart sing, albeit the flesh may groan,54
Taking the Master’s Prayer for its sweet psalm55
Father, Thy will be done.”56
E’en as Thy saints of old, what time they lay57
In midnight dungeon, sang in spite of scorn,58
So may our souls behind these walls of clay59
Sing on through night till morn.60
Till then this brain inspire, this breast inflame,61
Touch these cold lips with Thine own altar coal62
Now “ all that is within me” bless Thy name63
Bless, “ bless the Lord, my soul.”64
Landscape with a leafless tree in front of a body of water. Additional trees and foliage line the background. 1/3 page width and approximately 1/5 page height.