S. Austin Allibone, comp. Prose Quotations from Socrates to Macaulay. 1880.
She is gone! No longer shrinking from the winter wind, or lifting her calm pure forehead to the summers kiss; no longer gazing with her blue and glorious eyes into a far-oft sky; no longer yearning with a holy heart for heaven; no longer toiling painfully along the path, upward and upward, to the everlasting rock on which are based the walls of the city of the Most High; no longer here; she is there; gazing, seeing, knowing, loving, as the blessed only see, and know, and love. Earth has one angel less, and heaven one more, since yesterday. Already, kneeling at the throne, she has received her welcome, and is resting on the bosom of her Saviour. If human love have power to penetrate the veil (and hath it not?) then there are yet living here a few who have the blessedness of knowing that an angel loves them.
It is not strange that that early love of the heart should come back, as it so often does, when the dim eye is brightening with its last light. It is not strange that the freshest fountains the heart has ever known in its wastes should bubble up anew when the life-blood is growing stagnant. It is not strange that a bright memory should come to a flying old man, as the sunshine breaks across the hills at the close of a stormy day; nor that in the light of that ray the very clouds that made the day dark should grow gloriously beautiful.
To be left alone in the wide world, with scarcely a friend,this makes the sadness which, striking its pang into the minds of the young and the affectionate, teaches them too soon to watch and interpret the spirit-signs of their own heart. The solitude of the aged, when, one by one, their friends fall off, as fall the sere leaves from the trees in autumn,what is it to the overpowering sense of desolation which fills almost to breaking the sensitive heart of youth when the nearest and dearest ties are severed? Rendered callous by time and suffering, the old feel less, although they complain more: the young, bearing a grief too deep for tears, shrine in their bosoms sad memories and melancholy anticipations, which often give dark hues to their feelings in after-life.
The breath of peace was fanning her glorious brow; her head was bowed a very little forward, and a tress, escaping from its bonds, fell by the side of her pure white temple, and close to her just opened lips; it hung there motionless! no breath disturbed its repose! She slept as an angel might sleep, having accomplished the mission of her God.