174. To Edward Caswall

{317} (A gift for the new year  in return
for his volume of Poems.)

ONCE, o'er a clear calm pool,
The fulness of an over-brimming spring,
I saw the hawthorn and the chestnut fling
Their willing arms, of vernal blossoms full
And light green leaves: the lilac too was there,
The prodigal laburnum, dropping gold,
While the rich gorse along the turf crept near,
Close to the fountain's margin, and made bold
To peep into that pool, so calm and clear:—
As if well pleased to see their image bright
Reflected back upon their innocent sight;
Each flower and blossom shy
Lingering the live-long day in still delight,
Yet without touch of pride, to view,
Yea, with a tender, holy sympathy,
What was itself, yet was another too. {318}
So on thy verse, my Brother and my Friend,
—The fresh upwelling of thy tranquil spirit,—
I see a many angel forms attend;
And gracious souls elect,
And thronging sacred shades, that shall inherit
One day the azure skies,
And peaceful saints, in whitest garments deck'd;
And happy infants of the second birth:—
These, and all other plants of paradise,
Thoughts from above, and visions that are sure,
And providences past, and memories dear,
In much content hang o'er that mirror pure,
And recognize each other's faces there,
And see a heaven on earth.

The Oratory
January 1, 1858.

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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
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