True Deeds

There is a Lantern of true, silent deeds
Swinging refulgent in the spacious air,
Where restless words, those misty messengers
Sob out their subtle hearts with yea and nay,
And, like to myriad insects fluttering,
Brush with their wings that spiring crystal horn
That keeps inviolate a constant light.

'Tis the presiding sun at every birth,
The soft consoling moon at every death;
And in the middle watches of our life
What is it but the one sweet single star,
Whose twinkle, like the laughter of dear thoughts,
Upon the feeble vadings of our hearts
Sheds ever rays of tender irony!

Come night, come day! It knows no faltering,
Swung o'er the hubbub of a windy world.
No victory, but it doth halo round,
No sad defeat, whose wounds it hath not bathed;
And in those trackless wilds where nothing's done —
A mournful eye, its faint far glimmering
Peers through the distance everlastingly.
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