"There was darkness."
A Morn of guilt, an hour of doom -
Shocks and tremblings dread;
All the city sunk in gloom -
Thick darkness overhead.
An awful Sufferer straight and stark;
Mocking voices fell;
Tremblings - tremblings in the dark,
In heaven, and earth, and hell.
Groping, stumbling up the way,
They pass, whom Christ forgave;
They know not what they do - they say,
"Himself He cannot save.
On His head behold the crown
That alien hands did weave;
Let Him come down, let Him come down,
And we will believe!"
Fearsome dreams, a rending veil,
Cloven rocks down hurl'd;
God's love itself doth seem to fail
The Saviour of the world.
Dying thieves do curse and wail,
Either side is scorn;
Lo! He hangs while some cry "Hail!"
Of heaven and earth forlorn.
Still o'er His passion darkness lowers,
He nears the deathly goal;
But He shall see in His last hours
Of the travail of His soul;
Lo, a cry! - the firstfruits given
On the accursèd tree -
"Dying Love of God in heaven,
Lord, remember me!"
By His sacrifice, foreknown
Long ages ere that day,
And by God's sparing of His own
Our debt of death to pay;
By the Comforter's consent,
With ardent flames bestow'd,
In this dear race when Jesus went
To make His mean abode -
By the pangs God look'd not on,
And the world dared not see;
By all redeeming wonders won
Through that dread mystery; -
Lord, receive once more the sigh
From the accursèd tree -
"Sacred Love of God most high,
O remember me!"