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

December 22

George Eliot

By James Ashcroft Noble (1844–1896)

“THY prayer is granted: thou hast joined the Choir

Invisible; the Choir whose music makes

Life’s discords grow to harmonies, and takes

Us unawares with sounds that are as fire

And light and melody in one. We tire

Of weary noon and night, of dawn that breaks

Only to bring again the cares, the aches,

The meannesses that drag us to the mire:

When lo! amid life’s din we catch thy clear

Large utterances from the lucid upper air,

Bidding us wipe away the miry stain,

And scale the stainless stars, and have no fear

Save the one dread of forfeiting our share

In the deep joy that follows noble pain.”