Hymn for the Annunciation

St. Luke xi. 27.

O H ! Thou who deign'st to sympathize
With all our frail and fleshly ties,
  Maker, yet Brother dear,
Forgive the too presumptuous thought,
If, calming wayward grief, I sought
  To gaze on Thee too near.

Yet sure 'twas not presumption, Lord,
'Twas Thine own comfortable word
  That made the lesson known:
Of all the dearest bonds we prove,
Thou countest sons' and mothers' love
  Most sacred, most Thine own

When wandering here a little span,
Thou took'st on Thee to rescue man,
  Thou hadst no earthly sire:
That wedded love we prize so dear,
As if our heaven and home were here,
  It lit in Thee no fire.

On no sweet sister's faithful breast
Would'st Thou Thine aching forehead rest,
  On no kind brother lean;
But who, O perfect filial heart,
E'er did like Thee a true son's part,
  Endearing, firm, serene?

Thou wept'st, meek maiden, mother mild,
Thou wept'st upon thy sinless Child,
  Thy very heart was riven:
And yet, what mourning matron here
Would deem thy sorrows bought too dear
  By all on this side heaven?

A Son that never did amiss,
That never shamed His Mother's kiss,
  Nor cross'd her fondest prayer:
E'en from the tree He deign'd to bow
For her His agonized brow,
  Her, His sole earthly care.

Alas! when those we love are gone,
Of all sad thoughts, 'tis only one
  Brings bitterness indeed;
The thought what poor, cold, heartless aid
We lent to cheer them while they stayed;
  This makes the conscience bleed.

Lord, by Thy love, and by Thy power,
And by the sorrows of that hour,
  Let me not weep too late.
Help me in anguish meet and true
My thankless words and ways to rue,
  Now justly desolate.

By Thine own Mother's first caress,
Whom Thou with smiles so sweet didst bless,
  'Twas heaven on earth to see;
Help me, though late, to love aright
Her who has glided from my sight,
  To rest (dear Saint) with Thee.

Thou knowest if her gentle glance
Look on us, as of old, to enhance
  Our evening calm so sweet:
But, Son of Mary, Thou art there.
O, make us ('tis a mourner's prayer)
  For such dear visits meet.
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