James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

July 18

Dean Stanley

By Paul Hamilton Hayne (1830–1886)

(Died July 18, 1881)

DEAD! dead! in sooth his marbled brow is cold,

And prostrate lies that brave, majestic head;

True! his stilled features own death’s arctic mould,

Yet, by Christ’s blood, I know he is not dead!

Here fades the cast-off vestment that he wore,

The robe of flesh, whence his true self hath fled;

Whate’er be false, one faith holds fast and sure,

Great souls like his abide not with the dead:

Eyried with God, beyond all mortal pain,

Breathing the effluence of ethereal birth,

Through deeds divine, his spirit walks again,

On rhythmic feet the mournful paths of earth!

In heaven immortal, yet on earth supreme,

The glamour of his goodness still survives,

Not in vain glimpses of a flattering dream,

But flower and fruit of ransomed human lives.

His hopes were ocean-wide, and clasped mankind;

No Levite plea his mercy turned apart,

But wounded souls—to whom all else were blind—

He soothed with wine and balsam of the heart.

With stainless hands he reared his Master’s cross;

His Master’s watchword pealed o’er land and sea;

And still through days of gain, and days of loss,

Proclaimed the golden truce of charity.

All men were brethren to his larger creed,

But given the thought sincere—the earnest aim;

God’s garden will not spurn the humblest weed

That yearns for purer air and loftier flame.

This sweet evangel of the unborn years,

Seer-like he spake, as one that viewed his goal,

While the world felt through darkness and through tears,

Mysterious music thrill its raptured soul.

Dead! nay, not dead! while eagle thoughts aspire,

Clothed in winged deeds across the empyreal height,

And all the expanding space is flushed with fire,

And deep on deep, heaven opens to our sight,—

He cannot die! yet, o’er his dust we shed

Our rain of human sorrow; on his breast

Cross the pale palms: and pulseless heart and head

Leave to the quiet of his cloistered rest.

Sleep, knightly scholar! warrior-saint, repose!

Thy life-force folded like an unfurled sail!

Spent is time’s rage—its foam of crested woes—

And thou hast found, at last, the Holy Grail!