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

By The Prisoner of Love (1904). I. Christ the Outcast

Frederick William Orde Ward (1843–1922)

  • “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not.”
  • St. John i. 11.

  • WHEN Jesus came to earth below

    To make men Godlike too and free,

    And gave what Heaven could but bestow

    On those blue hills of Galilee;

    They thrust Him from them unto death,

    Even in His own dear Nazareth.

    Foxes had holes, the bird its nest,

    The leper knew a corner dim

    For weary brow and wounded breast—

    His earth had nowhere room for Him;

    Against Him strove the wind and wave,

    He found no shelter but the grave.

    Yea, though He simply sought men’s good

    And lavished on them Living Bread,

    Who as our High Priest loved and stood

    Betwixt the dying and the dead;

    Yet they that felt His mercies most,

    Drave Him an exile from their coast.

    O shall He homeless walk the lands

    Which reap the blessings He hath sown,

    And plead in vain with piercèd hands

    For that which always was His own?

    Shall He, our Fountain from the first,

    Be yet the only one athirst?