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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By Poems. II. Spring Thoughts

Aubrey de Vere (1814–1902)

WHO feels not, when the Spring once more

Stepping o’er Winter’s grave forlorn

With winged feet, retreads the shore

Of widowed earth, his bosom burn?

As ordered flower succeeds to flower,

And May the ladder of her sweets

Ascends, advancing hour by hour

From scale to scale, what heart but beats?

Some Presence veiled, in fields and groves,

That mingles rapture with remorse;

Some buried joy beside us moves,

And thrills the soul with such discourse

As they, perchance, that wondering pair

Who to Emmaus bent their way,

Hearing, heard not. Like them our prayer

We make—“The night is near us—Stay!”

With Paschal chants the churches ring:

Their echoes strike along the tombs:

The birds their hallelujahs sing:

Each flower with floral incense fumes.

Our long-lost Eden seems restored;

As on we move with tearful eyes

We feel through all the illumined sward

Some upward-working Paradise.