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Through that pure virgin shrine,

That sacred veil drawn o'er Thy glorious noon,

That men might look and live, as glow-worms shine

And face the moon:

Wise Nicodemus saw such light

As made him know his GOD by night.

No mercy-seat of gold,

No dead and dusty cherub, nor carved stone,

But His own living works did my LORD hold

And lodge alone;

Where trees and herbs did watch and peep

And wonder, while the Jews did sleep.

Dear Night! this world's defeat;

The stop to busy fools; Care's check and curb;

The day of Spirits; my soul's calm retreat

Which none disturb!

CHRIST's progress137137See S. Mark i. 35; S. Luke xxi. 37, and His prayer time;

The hours to which high Heaven doth chime.

There is in GOD--some say--

A deep, but dazzling darkness; as men here

Say it is late and dusky, because they

See not all clear.

O for that Night! where I in Him

Might live invisible and dim!

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