Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
 
“That They All May Be One”
 
Roden Berkeley Wriothesley Noel (1834–94)
 
 
WHENE’ER there comes a little child,
My darling comes with him;
Whene’er I hear a birdie wild
Who sings his merry whim,
Mine sings with him:        5
If a low strain of music sails
Among melodious hills and dales,
When a white lamb or kitten leaps,
Or star, or vernal flower peeps,
When rainbow dews are pulsing joy,        10
Or sunny waves, or leaflets toy,
Then he who sleeps
Softly wakes within my heart;
With a kiss from him I start;
He lays his head upon my breast,        15
Tho’ I may not see my guest,
Dear bosom-guest!
In all that ’s pure and fair and good,
I feel the spring-time of thy blood,
Hear thy whisper’d accents flow        20
To lighten woe,
Feel them blend,
Although I fail to comprehend.
And if one woundeth with harsh word,
Or deed, a child, or beast, or bird,        25
It seems to strike weak Innocence
Through him, who hath for his defence
Thunder of the All-loving Sire,
And mine, to whom He gave the fire.
 

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