Sympathy

A poem by George MacDonald

Grief held me silent in my seat;
I neither moved nor smiled:
Joy held her silent at my feet,
My shining lily-child.

She raised her face and looked in mine;
She deemed herself denied;
The door was shut, there was no shine;
Poor she was left outside!

Once, twice, three times, with infant grace
Her lips my name did mould;
Her face was pulling at my face--
She was but ten months old.

I saw; the sight rebuked my sighs;
It made me think--Does God
Need help from his poor children's eyes
To ease him of his load?

Ah, if he did, how seldom then
The Father would be glad!
If comfort lay in the eyes of men,
He little comfort had!

We cry to him in evil case,
When comfort sore we lack;
And when we troubled seek his face,
Consoled he sends us back;

Nor waits for prayer to rise and climb--
He wakes the sleeping prayer;
He is our father all the time,
And servant everywhere.

I looked not up; foreboding hid
Kept down my heart the while;
'Twas he looked up; my Father did
Smile in my infant's smile.

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