172. St. Philip in his Disciples

{312} (A Song.)

I ASK not for fortune, for silken attire,
For servants to throng me, and crowds to admire;
I ask not for power, or for name or success,
These do not content me, these never can bless.

Let the world flaunt her glories! each glittering prize,
Though tempting to others, is nought in my eyes.
A child of St. Philip, my master and guide,
I would live as he lived, and would die as he died.

Why should I be sadden'd, though friendless I be?
For who in his youth was so lonely as he?
If spited and mock'd, so was he, when he cried
To his God on the cross to stand by his side. {313}

If scanty my fare, yet how was he fed?
On olives and herbs and a small roll of bread.
Are my joints and bones sore with aches and with pains?
Philip scourged his young flesh with fine iron chains.

A closet his home, where he, year after year,
Bore heat or cold greater than heat or cold here;
A rope stretch'd across it, and o'er it he spread
His small stock of clothes; and the floor was his bed.

One lodging besides; God's temple he chose,
And he slept in its porch his few hours of repose;
Or studied by light which the altar-lamp gave,
Or knelt at the Martyr's victorious grave.

I'm ashamed of myself, of my tears and my tongue,
So easily fretted, so often unstrung;
Mad at trifles, to which a chance moment gives birth,
Complaining of heaven, and complaining of earth. {314}

So now, with his help, no cross will I fear,
But will linger resign'd through my pilgrimage here.
A child of St. Philip, my master and guide,
I will live as he lived, and will die as he died.

The Oratory
.
1857.

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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
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