733. Sorrow

Aubrey De Vere. 1814-1902

COUNT each affliction, whether light or grave,
  God's messenger sent down to thee; do thou
  With courtesy receive him; rise and bow;
And, ere his shadow pass thy threshold, crave
Permission first his heavenly feet to lave;
  Then lay before him all thou hast; allow
  No cloud of passion to usurp thy brow,
Or mar thy hospitality; no wave
Of mortal tumult to obliterate
  The soul's marmoreal calmness: Grief should be,
Like joy, majestic, equable, sedate;
  Confirming, cleansing, raising, making free;
Strong to consume small troubles; to commend
Great thoughts, grave thoughts, thoughts lasting to the end.

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