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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

The Heart’s Song

By Arthur Cleveland Coxe (1818–1896)

[From Christian Ballads. 1840.—Revised Edition. 1887.]

IN the silent midnight watches,

List—thy bosom door!

How it knocketh, knocketh, knocketh,

Knocketh evermore!

Say not—’Tis thy pulse’s beating,

’Tis thy heart of sin;

’Tis thy Saviour knocks, and crieth,

Rise and let me in!

Death comes down with ruthless footstep

To the hall or hut:

Think you Death will tarry knocking

Where the door is shut?

Jesus waiteth—waiteth—waiteth,

But the door is fast;

Grieved, away the Saviour goeth:

Death breaks in at last.

Then ’tis thine to stand entreating

Christ to let thee in:

At the gate of heaven beating,

Wailing for thy sin.

Nay, alas! thou foolish virgin,

Hast thou then forgot

Jesus waited long to know thee,

But—He knows thee not.