For long years has thy pleading voice been heard
Unanswered; now some hidden hand which held
Me through the darkness has at last dispelled
(On this rare morning, since Thy voice upstirred
The thrilling joy-note of the early bird)
All fears of that dim night-time; and has knelled
The death of baser motive, and compelled
My spirit unto Thee, to hear Thy word.
Henceforward must I speak as one empowered
To give again Thy message, full and sweet,
To weary thousands, kneeling at Thy feet;
To bring them newer life, all richly dowered
With health and peace—that new life from above,
Conceived in Faith and Hope; quickened in love!
Whilst we are asking ourselves, shall I, or shall I not?
The moment is passed, and the flower of joy which we might have given is withered, and often can no more be revived by tears of penitence.