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A Lesson Learned (Poem)

Before the war Death was a gloomy portal
Closed to the living—hiding those who’d gone:
But we have learned it leads to life immortal,
Where boundless freedom crowns all work well done.

So often open in these days of sorrow,
Admitting loved ones who thro' sacrifice
Win untold joy in that unknown tomorrow
Whose glory well redeems the awful price.

So often open—that this radiant glory
We glimpse as loved ones swift are passing thro'
Worthy reward of Love’s heroic story,
Inspiring us on earth new work to do.

So often open—to our faith is given
Power triumphant that we fearless die,
Knowing that Death is but a door to Heaven,
From whose fair light its gloomy shadows fly.

Immortal heroes—you to bliss supernal,
Have won your way thro' life which ends in death.
Flesh may decay; but spirit is eternal—
Your passing bids us all live on in faith.

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Herbert E. E. Hayes

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