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Henry Charles Beeching, ed. (1859–1919). Lyra Sacra: A Book of Religious Verse. 1903.

By Christina Georgina Rossetti (1830–1894)

Sooner or later: yet at last

SOONER or later: yet at last
The Jordan must be past;
It may be he will overflow
His banks the day we go;
It may be that his cloven deep        5
Will stand up as an heap.
Sooner or later: yet one day
We all must pass that way;
Each man, each woman, humbled, pale,
Pass veiled within the veil;        10
Child, parent, bride, companion,
Alone, alone, alone.
For none a ransom can be paid,
A suretyship be made:
I, bent by mine own burden, must        15
Enter my house of dust;
I, rated to the full amount,
Must render mine account.
When earth and sea shall empty all
Their graves of great and small;        20
When earth wrapped in a fiery flood
Shall no more hide her blood;
When mysteries shall be revealed;
All secrets be unsealed;
When things of night, when things of shame        25
Shall find at last a name,
Pealed for a hissing and a curse
Throughout the universe:
Then awful Judge, most awful God,
Then cause to bud Thy rod,        30
To bloom with blossoms, and to give
Almonds; yea, bid us live.
I plead Thyself with Thee, I plead
Thee in our utter need:
Jesus, most merciful of men,        35
Show mercy on us then;
Lord God of mercy and of men
Show mercy on us then.