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

By II. The Transfiguration (“Stay, Master, stay”)

Samuel Greg (1804–1877)

STAY, Master, stay upon this heavenly hill

A little longer, let us linger still;

With these two mighty ones of old beside,

Near to the Awful Presence still abide;

Before the throne of light we trembling stand,

And catch a glimpse into the spirit-land.

Stay, Master, stay! we breathe a purer air;

This life is not the life that waits us there:

Thoughts, feelings, flashes, glimpses come and go;

We cannot speak them—nay, we do not know;

Wrapt in this cloud of light we seem to be

The thing we fain would grow—eternally.

“No!” saith the Lord, “the hour is past,—we go;

Our home, our life, our duties lie below.

While here we kneel upon the mount of prayer,

The plough lies waiting in the furrow there;

Here we sought God that we might know His will;

There we must do it,—serve Him,—seek Him still.”

If man aspires to reach the throne of God,

O’er the dull plains of earth must lie the road.

He who best does his lowly duty here,

Shall mount the highest in a nobler sphere:

At God’s own feet our spirits seek their rest,

And he is nearest Him who serves Him best.