"Come, pensive nun, devout and pure,
Sober, steadfast and demure."
White-robed nun, I pray thee tell me
Whatsoe'er my life shall be;
Thou of God art purely chosen,
Ne'er can I be like to thee.
There is sunlight in the shadow
Of the lives we live below;
There is starlight in the darkness
Of the night of human woe.
Yet I pray thee, sweet-voiced woman,
Tell me of thy life and thee;
Can the soul to heaven given
Yield its secrets unto me?
Nevermore the earth shall claim thee,
Only lilies bloom for thee;
All the world is full of beauty
That thy eyes may never see.
On the hill the daisies springing,
Lift their heads to greet the morn;
Yet thou mayest not pluck the smallest
Of these blossoms lately born.
Violets may bring no memories
Unto thee of days gone by;
Summer eves and joyous mornings--
In the grave these, too, must die.
Long ago, the roses drooping,
Crimson blushed and died for thee;
Yet to-day no more thou know'st them,
They are lost in Life's dead sea.
Oh, the world is full of beauty!
Oh, the world is full of love!
Yet the chains that bind thee earthward,
Link thy soul with Heaven above.
Through the windows creeps the sunlight,
Rays of gold and restless red;
Covering all the world with glory,
Sweetly resting on thy head.
Would my life were crowned with sunlight,
Would my soul was pure as thine!
Then the world no more would know me,
Earth were Heaven, and Heaven were mine.