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The Father-Land

( Originally Published 1868 )



FROM THE GERMAN OF CLAUS HARMS

KNOW ye the land—on earth'twere vainly sought-
To which the heart in sorrows turns its thought?
Where no complaint is heard, tears never flow,—
The good are blest, the weak with vigour glow?
Know ye it well ?

For this, for this,
All earthly wish or care, my friends, dismiss !

Know ye the way—the rugged path of thorns ?
His lagging progress there the traveller mourns ;
He faints, he sinks,—from dust he cries to God
" Relieve me, Father, from the weary road!"
Know ye it well?

It guides, it guides
To that dear land where all we hope abides.

Know ye that Friend ?—In him a man you see ;—
Yet more than man, more than all men, is he:
Himself before us trod the path of thorns ;
To pilgrims now his heart with pity turns.
Know ye him well?

His hand, his hand
Will safely bring us to that Father-land.



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