previous next

[212] Where sweeps the storm Alechan's steppes along,
     His paper horses for the lost to ride,
And wearying Buddha with his prayers to make
     The figures living for the traveller's sake,
Than he who hopes with cheap praise to beguile.
     The ear of God, dishonoring man the while;
Who dreams the pearl gate's hinges, rusty grown,
     Are moved by flattery's oil of tongue alone;
That in the scale Eternal Justice bears
     The generous deed weighs less than selfish prayers,
And words intoned with graceful unction move
     The Eternal Goodness more than lives of truth and love.
Alas, the Church! The reverend head of Jay,
     Enhaloed with its saintly silvered hair,
Adorns no more the places of her prayer;
     And brave young Tyng, too early called away,
Troubles the Haman of her courts no more
     Like the just Hebrew at the Assyrian's door;
And her sweet ritual, beautiful but dead
     As the dry husk from which the grain is shed,
And holy hymns from which the life devout
     Of saints and martyrs has wellnigh gone out,
Like candles dying in exhausted air,
     For Sabbath use in measured grists are ground;
And, ever while the spiritual mill goes round,
     Between the upper and the nether stones,
Unseen, unheard, the wretched bondman groans,
     And urges his vain plea, prayer-smothered, anthem-drowned!

O heart of mine, keep patience! Looking forth,
     As from the Mount of Vision, I behold,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Tyng (1)
Jay (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: