[Written for the Sentinel]

Feed the Hungry

Oft of an evening all the silent skies
Spread out their dark blue awning overhead,
And heaven's big inquisitive bright eyes,
Like golden spiders on an unseen thread,
Draw nearer earth to view the works of men,
And seeing how the passing hours are sped
In sleep or labor, giving or in gain,
Return to heaven with the dawn again.

And once they saw the prophet Daniel thrown
To feast the ravenous lions' ravenous maw;
Blood-russet were the dungeon walls of stone,
Grim spoils were heaped upon the rock-hewn floor;
The fierce eyes glinted through the semidark;
O'er field and forest went the hungry roar
To where the lonely herdsmen trembling mark
The watchdogs' ears a-prick and answering bark.

But Daniel neither saw nor heard these things;
He only saw God's creatures standing nigh;
He only saw the bright light wall that rings
Around the secret place of the Most High
Forward he stepped from cruel bonds released,
Warm welcome kindling in his earnest eye,
And smoothed the tawny mane of each great beast,
Stroked the rough flank and bade it to his feast.

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