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A father of women, and other poems/The Divine Privilege

For other versions of this work, see The Divine Privilege.


LORD, where are Thy prerogatives?
Why, men have more than Thou hast kept;
The king rewards, remits, forgives,
The poet to a throne has stept.

And Thou, despoiled, hast given away
Worship to men, success to strife,
Thy glory to the heavenly day,
And made Thy sun the lord of life.

Is one too precious to impart,
One property reserved to Christ?
One, cherished, grappled to that heart?
—To be alone the Sacrificed?

O Thou who lovest to redeem,
One whom I know lies sore oppressed.
Thou wilt not suffer me to dream
That I can bargain for her rest.

Seven hours I swiftly sleep, while she
Measures the leagues of dark, awake.
O that my dewy eyes might be
Parched by a vigil for her sake!

But O rejected! O in vain!
I cannot give who would not keep.
I cannot buy, I cannot gain,
I cannot give her half my sleep.