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[287] Fair seem these winter days, and soon
     Shall blow the warm west-winds of spring,
To set the unbound rills in tune
     And hither urge the bluebird's wing.
The vales shall laugh in flowers, the woods
     Grow misty green with leafing buds,
And violets and wind-flowers sway
     Against the throbbing heart of May.

Break forth, my lips, in praise, and own
     The wiser love severely kind;
Since, richer for its chastening grown,
     I see, whereas I once was blind.
The world, O Father! hath not wronged
     With loss the life by Thee prolonged;
But still, with every added year,
     More beautiful Thy works appear!

As Thou hast made thy world without,
     Make Thou more fair my world within;
Shine through its lingering clouds of doubt
     Rebuke its haunting shapes of sin;
Fill, brief or long, my granted span
     Of life with love to thee and man;
Strike when thou wilt the hour of rest,
     But let my last days be my best!

2d mo., 1868.

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