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A Brief Commentary On The Apocalypse by Sylvester Bliss


Old Mother EARTH is wan and pale,
Her face is wrinkled sore;
Her locks are blanched, her heart is cold,
Her garments stiff with gore;
With furrowed brow and dim sad eyes,
With trembling steps and slow,
She marks the course that first she trod
Six thousand years ago!

The Earth is old, the Earth is cold,
She shivers and complains;
How many Winters fierce and chill
Have racked her limbs with pains!
Drear tempests, lightning, flood and flame
Have scarred her visage so,
That scarce we deem she shone so fair,
Six thousand years ago!

Yet comely was the youthful Earth,
And lightly tripped along
To music from a starry choir,
Whose sweet celestial song
Through Nature's temple echoed wild,
And soft as streamlets flow,
Where sister spheres replied with her,
Six thousand years ago!

And many happy children there
Upon her breast reclined,
The young Earth smiled with aspect fair,
The heavens were bright and kind;
The azure cope above her head
In love seemed bending low,
O happy was the youthful Earth,
Six thousand years ago!

Alas! those children of the Earth
With hate began to burn,
And Murder stained her beauteous robe,
And bade the young Earth mourn.
And ages, heavy ages, still
Have bowed with gathering woe
The form of her whose life was joy,
Six thousand years ago!

Old Earth! drear Earth! thy tender heart
Bewails thy chosen ones;
Thou look'st upon the myriad graves
That hide their gathered bones;
For them, by day and night, thy tears
Unceasingly must flow;
Death chilled the fountain-head of life
Six thousand years ago!

Old Earth! old Earth! above thy head
The heavens are dark and chill,
The sun looks coldly on thee now,
The stars shine pale and still;
No more the heavenly symphonies
Through listening ether flow,
Which swelled upon creation's ear,
Six thousand years ago!

Weep not in bitter grief, O Earth!
Weep not in hopelessness!
From out the heavens |a still small voice|
Whispers returning peace.
Thy tears are precious in the sight
Of ONE who marks their flow,
Who purposes of mercy formed,
Six thousand years ago!

Thy days of grief are numbered all,
Their sum will soon be told:
The joy of youth, the smile of God,
Shall bless thee as of old;
Shall shed a purer, holier light
Upon thy peaceful brow,
Than beamed upon thy morning hour
Six thousand years ago!

Thy chosen ones shall live again,
A countless, tearless throng,
To wake creation's voice anew,
And swell the choral song.
Go, Earth! go wipe thy falling tears,
Forget thy heavy woe:
Hope died not with thy first-born sons,
Six thousand years ago!


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