The Thrice-Closed Eye

By Hannah Flagg Gould

The eye was closed, and calm the breast;
‘T was Sleep—the weary was at rest!
While fancy on her rainbow wings
Ranged through a world of new-made things,
Mid regions pure, and visions bright,
Formed but to mock the waking sight.
For, ah! how light does slumber sit,
On sorrow’s brow—how quickly flit
From her pale throne, when envious care
Comes wrapped in clouds and frowning there!
Again I saw the falling lid,
And from his sight the world was hid.
The lip was moved; the knee was bent;
The heavy laden spirit went,
Bearing her burden from the dust
Up to her only Rock of trust;
And, childlike, on her Father’s breast
Cast off the load, and found her rest.
For, this was Prayer—’t was faith and love
Communing with a God above.
At length that eye was locked! the key
Had opened heaven—’t was Death! yes, he
Had sweetly quelled the mortal strife,
And to the saint the gates of life
Unbolted. On the sleeper’s brow
Lay the smooth seal of quiet now,
Which none could break. The soul, that here
Dwelt with eternal things so near,
Had burst her bonds to soar on high,
And left to earth the thrice-closed eye!

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