Page:Female Prose Writers of America.djvu/108

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
90
LYDIA H. SIGOURNEY.

the little one, and be sundered no more? Found it not a fold whence no lamb can wander and be lost? a mansion where there is no death, neither sorrow nor crying? Forgot it not all its sufferings for joy at that dear Redeemer’s welcome, which, in its cradle, it had been taught to lisp—“Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of Heaven.”


Rule Segment - Span - 100px.svg Rule Segment - Diamond - 4px.svg Rule Segment - Diamond - 4px.svg Rule Segment - Span - 100px.svg


“I HAVE SEEN AN END OF ALL PERFECTION.”


I have seen a man in the glory of his days, and in the pride of his strength. He was built like the strong oak, that strikes its root deep in the earth—like the tall cedar, that lifts its head above the trees of the forest. He feared no danger—he felt no sickness—he wondered why any should groan or sigh at pain. His mind was vigorous like his body; he was perplexed at no intricacy, he was daunted at no obstacle. Into hidden things he searched, and what was crooked he made plain. He went forth boldly upon the face of the mighty deep. He surveyed the nations of the earth. He measured the distances of the stars, and called them by their names. He gloried in the extent of his knowledge, in the vigour of his understanding, and strove to search even into what the Almighty had concealed. And when I looked upon him, I said with the poet, “what a piece of work is man! how noble in reason! how infinite in faculties! in form and moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god!”

I returned—but his look was no more lofty, nor his step proud. His broken frame was like some ruined tower. His hairs were white and scattered, and his eye gazed vacantly upon the passers by. The vigour of his intellect was wasted, and of all that he had gained by study, nothing remained. He feared when there was no danger, and where was no sorrow he wept. His decaying memory had become treacherous. It showed him only broken images of the glory that had departed. His house was to him like a strange