I Laid Me Down And Slept

Dark was the midnight hour, 
And wild with storm. Nor moon nor pitying star 
Gleamed through the inky darkness from afar; 
And Earth seemed reeling blindly to her doom, 
As reels some stout ship thro’ the midnight gloom, 
What time the tempest and the waves have power. 

                                    I stood alone that night, 
And stretched my chill hands tow’rd the rayless sky, 
And heard the wrathful winds go shrieking by, 
And thought of one, whose weary feet from far 
Were journeying homeward thro’ that night’s wild war, 
Stricken with dire Consumption’s deadly blight 

                                    “Oh! feeble, woman’s hands 
Outstretched in anguish thro’ the enshrouding dark, 
Ye cannot reach that far-off, struggling bark 
That seems so lashed and beaten by the storm; 
Ye cannot clasp that fever-stricken form, 
And lead him home across the cold, wet sands! 

                                    “But thou canst kneel and pray, 
Oh, burdened one!–Thy Father, through the night 
Can hear thy prayer!–Thy tears fall in His sight! 
Call e’er so faintly, He thy voice can hear! 
Then close the door, and pray;–thy Lord is near– 
Is near to thee, and near to him alway!” 

                                    Thus spake the voice of Love;– 
And, kneeling there, in God’s own gracious ear 
I whispered all my anguish and my fear, 
Then laid me down, and slept, and saw no more 
The night’s black pall, or heard the sullen roar 
Of battling storms that ‘mid the darkness strove. 

                                    I slept, and woke at length, 
Strengthened, sustained. Another day, I knew 
That he had been sustained and strengthened too; 
And when, at length, his fevered hand I pressed, 
I blessed the love that so had brought him rest, 
And me, for added sorrows, added strength.

       – Mrs. J. C. Yule


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