Littell's Living Age/Volume 149/Issue 1931/"My Daughter, Hence and Pray! See, Night is Stealing o'er us"

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"My Daughter, Hence and Pray! See, Night is Stealing o'er us"

My daughter, hence and pray! see, night is stealing o'er us,
Golden the planet dawns to pierce the clouds before us:
     Grey mist now veils the hills — ah! faint, ah! vague are they;
And scarce one distant wheel rolls through the shadows. Listen!
All seek their rest at home, and where the highways glisten,
     The trees to evening winds shake out the dust of day.

And twilight, opening forth night's realm the stars that hideth,
Bids each bright orb declare where each in light abideth;
     The gradual fringes red in western skies decay;
Like silver in the shade, the night of waves is showing;
Furrows, and hedge, and wood, all indistincter growing,
     Until the traveller misdoubts him of the way.

The day for evil is, for weariness and anger.
Pray: for the night is here serene in calm and languor!
     The shepherd old, the winds through ruinous towers that sweep,
The waterpools, the flocks, with hoarse and broken bleating,
All suffer, all complain. The land at length is treating
     Her long fatigue to love, to worship and to sleep.

And angels at this hour unfold to babes their treasures,
The while we haste away to seek our empty pleasures,
     And little children now, with eyes upturned above,
Bared feet and folded hands, upon the pavement praying,
All at this selfsame hour, one selfsame prayer are saying;
     Pray God forgive our sins — "our Father," God of love!