[Written for the Sentinel.]


After the storm had passed, I raised mine eyes
To view the wreck. Here, every hard-won prize
Lay shattered; there, my fallen idol lay,
Mud-trampled. All my love-lit blissful day
Had drooped to gloaming, under lowering skies.

Broken my rose-heaped altar, hope seemed dead,
And that dream-goddess,—now with uncrowned head,—
That I named love, lay dying; everywhere
Was ruin piled on ruin; grim despair
Above the scene its sable pinions spread.

From my crushed heart arose a prayer that I
There on the ashes of my hopes might die,
When thro' the gloom I heard a voice that said,
"Take thou my hand, and lift again thine head;"
While to my side a presence fair drew nigh.

"That wounded creature was not love, ah no;
'Twas but a phantom. In this world below
Ye sometimes pass thro' fire truly to be
Prepared to walk in all humility,
Guided by Love divine," she whispered low.

Brightened the skies and cleared the mists away
Even as she spoke. I knew it yet was day,
For all the flowers revived—this life of mine
Soared upward to a height serene, divine.
And now Love walks beside me all the way.

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