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

October 2

To the Memory of Channing

By Anne Charlotte Lynch (1815–1891)

  • An American clergyman and philanthropist. One of the chief founders of American Unitarianism. He died on Oct. 2, 1842.

  • THOSE spirits God ordained,

    To stand the watchmen on the outer wall,

    Upon whose souls the beams of truth first fall;

    They who reveal the ideal, the unattained,

    And to their age, in stirring tones and high,

    Speak out for God, truth, man, and liberty—

    Such prophets, do they die?


    The landmarks of their age,

    High-priests, kings of the realm of mind, are they,

    A realm unbounded as posterity;

    The hopeful future is their heritage;

    Their words of truth, of love, and faith sublime,

    To a dark world of doubt, despair, and crime,

    Re-echo through all time.

    Such kindling words are thine,

    Thou, o’er whose tomb the requiem soundeth still,

    Thou from whose lips the silvery tones yet thrill

    In many a bosom, waking life divine;

    And since thy Master to the world gave token

    That for Love’s faith the creed of fear was broken,

    None higher have been spoken.


    Ages agone, like thee

    The famèd Greek with kindling aspect stood,

    And blent his eloquence with wind and flood,

    By the blue waters of the Ægean sea;

    But he heard not their everlasting hymn:

    His lofty soul with Error’s cloud was dim,

    And thy great teachers spake not unto him.