O, who shall say he knows the folds
Which veil another’s inmost heart,—
The hopes, thoughts, wishes, which it holds,
In which he never bore a part?
That hidden world no eye can see,—
O, who shall pierce its mystery?
There may be hope as pure, as bright,
As ever sought eternity,—
There may be light,—clear, heavenly light,
Where all seems cold and dark to thee;
And when thy spirit mourns the dust,
There may be trust,—delightful trust.
Go, bend to God, and leave to Him
The mystery of thy brother’s heart,
Nor vainly think his faith is dim,
Because in thine it hath no part;
He, too, is mortal,—and, like thee,
Would soar to immortality.
And if in duty’s hallowed sphere,
Like Christ, he meekly, humbly bends,—
With hands unstained, and conscience clear,
With life’s temptations still contends,—
O, leave him that unbroken rest,
The peace that shrines a virtuous breast!
But if his thoughts and hopes should err,
Still view him with a gentle eye,—
Remembering doubt, and change, and fear,
Are woven in man’s destiny;
And when the clouds are passed away,
That truth shall dawn with brightening day.