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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 Other World

By Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811–1896)

IT lies around us like a cloud,

The world we do not see;

Yet the sweet closing of an eye

May bring us there to be.

Its gentle breezes fan our cheek

Amid our worldly cares;

Its gentle voices whisper love,

And mingle with our prayers.

Sweet hearts around us throb and beat,

Sweet helping hands are stirred,

And palpitates the veil between,

With breathings almost heard.

The silence, awful, sweet, and calm,

They have no power to break;

For mortal words are not for them

To utter or partake.

So thin, so soft, so sweet they glide,

So near to press they seem,

They lull us gently to our rest,

They melt into our dream.

And, in the hush of rest they bring,

’Tis easy now to see,

How lovely and how sweet a pass

The hour of death may be;—

To close the eye and close the ear,

Wrapped in a trance of bliss,

And, gently drawn in loving arms,

To swoon from that to this:—

Scarce knowing if we wake or sleep,

Scarce asking where we are,

To feel all evil sink away,

All sorrow and all care!

Sweet souls around us watch us still,

Press nearer to our side;

Into our thoughts, into our prayers,

With gentle helping glide.

Let death between us be as naught,

A dried and vanished stream;

Your joy be the reality,

Our suffering life the dream.