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

By Rose’s Diary (1850). “O Father! I have sinn’d against Thee”

Henry Septimus Sutton (1825–1901)

O FATHER! I have sinn’d against Thee,—done

The thing I thought I never more should do.

My days were set before me, light all through,

But I have made them dark, it is too true,

And drawn dense clouds between me and my Sun.

Forgive me not, for grievous is my sin;

Yea, very deep and dark. Alas! I see

Such blackness in it, that I may not be

Forgiven of myself,—how then of Thee?—

Vile, vile without; black, utter black within.

If my shut eyes should dare their lids to part,

I know how they must quail beneath the blaze

Of Thy love’s greatness. No: I dare not raise

One prayer to look aloft, lest I should gaze

On such forgiveness as would break my heart.