Sonnet II (Botta)

        Oh thou who once on earth, beneath the weight
            Of our mortality didst live and move,
            The incarnation of profoundest love;
        Who on the Cross that love didst consummate;
            Whose deep and ample fullness could embrace
            The poorest, meanest of our fallen race:
        How shall we e'er that boundless debt repay?
            By long loud prayers in gorgeous temples said?
            By rich oblations on thine altars laid?
        Ah, no! not thus thou didst appoint the way:
            When thou wast bowed our human woe beneath,
            Then as a legacy thou didst bequeath
        Earth's sorrowing children to our ministry --
        And as we do to them, we do to thee.

This work was published before January 1, 1925, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.