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

By II. “Lord of the harvest! once again”

Joseph Anstice (1808–1836)

LORD of the harvest! once again

We thank Thee for the ripen’d grain;

For crops safe carried, sent to cheer

Thy servants through another year;

For all sweet holy thoughts, supplied

By seed-time and by harvest-tide.

The bare dead grain, in autumn sown,

Its robe of vernal green puts on;

Glad from its wintry grave it springs,

Fresh garnish’d by the King of Kings;

So, Lord, to those who sleep in Thee

Shall new and glorious bodies be.

Nor vainly of Thy Word we ask

A lesson from the reaper’s task;

So shall Thine angels issue forth;—

The tares be burnt;—the just of earth,

Playthings of sun and storm no more,

Be gather’d to their Father’s store.

Daily, O Lord, our prayer is said

As Thou hast taught, for daily bread;

But not alone our bodies feed;

Supply our fainting spirits’ need;

O Bread of Life! from day to day,

Be Thou their Comfort, Food, and Stay!