Topic - Infidelity 106. Progress of Unbelief

{181}
NOW is the Autumn of the Tree of Life;
    Its leaves are shed upon the unthankful earth,
Which lets them whirl, a prey to the winds' strife,
    Heartless to store them for the months of dearth.
    Men close the door, and dress the cheerful
        hearth,
Self-trusting still; and in his comely gear
Of precept and of rite, a household Baal rear.

But I will out amid the sleet, and view
    Each shrivelling stalk and silent-falling leaf.
Truth after truth, of choicest scent and hue,
    Fades, and in fading stirs the Angels' grief,
    Unanswer'd here; for she, once pattern chief
Of faith, my Country, now gross-hearted grown,
Waits but to burn the stem before her idol's throne.


At Sea
.
June 23, 1833.

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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
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