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CCCLXXIII

THE GUARDIAN ANGEL

O LORD, how wonderful in depth and height,

But most in man, how wonderful Thou art!

With what a love, what soft persuasive might

Victorious o'er the stubborn fleshly heart,

Thy tale complete of saints Thou dost provide,

To fill the throne which Angels lost through pride!

O man, strange composite of heaven and earth!

Majesty dwarf'd to baseness! fragrant flower

Running to poisonous seed! and seeming worth

Cloking corruption! weakness mastering power!

Who never art so near to crime and shame,

As when thou hast achieved some deed of name;--

How should ethereal natures comprehend

A thing made up of spirit and of clay,

Were we not task'd to nurse it and to tend,

Link'd one to one throughout its mortal day?

More than the Seraph in his height of place,

The Angel-guardian knows and loves the ransom'd race.

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