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W. Garrett Horder, comp. The Poets’ Bible: New Testament. 1895.

Christ departing to pray

Joseph Anstice (1808–1836)

‘And when He had sent them away, He departed into a mountain to pray.’—MARK VI. 46.

‘COME to a desert place apart,

And rest a little while;’

So spake the Christ, when limbs and heart

Wax’d faint and sick through toil.

High communings with God He sought,

But, where he sought them, found

The restless crowd together brought,

And labour’s weary round.

Then, not a thought to self was given,

Nor breath’d a word of blame;

He fed their souls with bread from Heaven,

Then stay’d their sinking frame.

Turn’d He, when that long task was done,

To sleep fatigue away?

When on the desert sank the sun,

The Saviour wak’d to pray.

O perfect pattern from above,

So strengthen us, that ne’er

Prayer keep us back from works of love,

Nor works of love from prayer.