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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Sir John Bowring 1792–1872

What of the Night?


WATCHMAN, tell us of the night,

What its signs of promise are!

Traveller, o’er yon mountain’s height

See that glory-beaming star!

Watchman, doth its beauteous ray

Aught of hope or joy foretell?

Traveller, yes! it brings the day,

Promis’d day of Israel.

Watchman, tell us of the night:

Higher yet that star ascends!

Traveller, blessedness and light,

Peace and truth, its course portends.

Watchman, will its beams alone

Gild the spot that gave them birth?

Traveller, ages are its own,

And it bursts o’er all the earth!

Watchman, tell us of the night,

For the morning seems to dawn.

Traveller, darkness takes its flight,

Doubt and terror are withdrawn.

Watchman, let thy wand’rings cease;

Hie thee to thy quiet home.

Traveller, Io! the Prince of Peace,

Lo! the Son of God is come.