LIFE OF OCTAVIA HILL
all she cares for may be a constant source of joy to herself and others. I wish she would draw more. I am sure she would do it well.
With many thanks to you for all the pleasure she has given us, believe me, dear Mrs. J., yours very truly,
July 24th, 1856.
"Let earnest work for ever show
Our willing service to our God;
Let peace and grace like flowers grow,
Beside the path that we have trod.
Let them be watered by that rain
Which from strong trees is wont to fall;
Which they themselves receive again
From Heaven which bendeth over all.
For not so much a flower depends
Upon the rain on which it lives,
As men do on the love of friends,—
The trust, the hope, which that love gives.
Yet if the rain is like man's love,
Like God's love is the blessed earth;
The one refreshing from above,
The other giving beings birth.
That which on God's love does not stand
No might of human love can plant.
God grant us rain! oh let us stand!
A root in Thee to all men grant!"
For dear little Harriet from her friend Octavia Hill, with earnest hope that neither summer drought nor winter frost may ever deprive her of the rain, and that her trust, like the roots of the flowers she loves, may ever take more firm hold of God, as their little fibres do of the strong nourishing dear old earth.