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[223] What daunts thee now? what shakes thee so?
     My sad soul say.
“I see a cloud like a curtain low
     Hang o'er my way.

“Whither I go I cannot tell:
     That cloud hangs black,
High as the heaven and deep as hell
     Across my track.

I see its shadow coldly enwrap
     The souls before.
Sadly they enter it, step by step,
     To return no more.

They shrink, they shudder, dear God! they kneel
     To Thee in prayer.
They shut their eyes on the cloud, but feel
     That it still is there.

In vain they turn from the dread Before
     To the Known and Gone;
For while gazing behind them evermore
     Their feet glide on.

Yet, at times, I see upon sweet pale faces
     A light begin
To tremble, as if from holy places
     And shrines within.

And at times methinks their cold lips move
     With hymn and prayer,
As if somewhat of awe, but more of love
     And hope were there.

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