Mary Of Magdala. (Hymn)

A poem by Jean Ingelow

"While it was yet dark."

Mary of Magdala, when the moon had set,
Forth to the garden that was with night dews wet,
Fared in the dark - woe-wan and bent was she,
'Neath many pounds' weight of fragrant spicery.

Mary of Magdala, in her misery,
"Who shall roll the stone up from yon door?" quoth she;
And trembling down the steep she went, and wept sore,
Because her dearest Lord was, alas! no more.

Her burden she let fall, lo! the stone was gone;
Light was there within, out to the dark it shone;
With an angel's face the dread tomb was bright,
The which she beholding fell for sore affright.

Mary of Magdala, in her misery,
Heard the white vision speak, and did straightway flee;
And an idle tale seem'd the wild words she said,
And nought her heart received - nought was comforted.

"Nay," quoth the men He loved, when they came to see,
"Our eyes beheld His death, the Saint of Galilee;
Who have borne Him hence truly we cannot say;"
Secretly in fear, they turn'd and went their way.

Mary of Magdala, in her misery,
Follow'd to the tomb, and wept full bitterly,
Linger'd in the dark, where first the Lord was laid;
The white one spake again, she was no more afraid.

In a moment - dawn! solemn, and sweet, and clear,
Kneeling, yet she weeps, and some one stands anear;
Asketh of her grief - she, all her thoughts are dim,
"If thou hast borne Him hence, tell me," doth answer Him.

"Mary," He saith, no more, shades of night have fled
Under dewy leaves, behold Him! - death is dead;
"Mary," and "O my Master," sorrow speeds away,
Sunbeams touch His feet this earliest Easter day.

After the pains of death, in a place unknown,
Trembling, of visions haunted, and all alone,
I too shall want Thee, Jesus, my hope, my trust,
Fall'n low, and all unclothed, even of my poor dust.

I, too, shall hear Thee speak, Jesus, my life divine;
And call me by my name, Lord, for I am Thine;
Thou wilt stand and wait, I shall so look and SEE,
In the garden of God, I SHALL look up - on THEE.

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