Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. IV. The Higher Life
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume IV. The Higher Life.  1904.
 
VII. Death: Immortality: Heaven
Heaven
Anonymous
 
THAT clime is not like this dull clime of ours;
    All, all is brightness there;
A sweeter influence breathes around its flowers,
    And a benigner air.
No calm below is like that calm above,        5
No region here is like that realm of love;
Earth’s softest spring ne’er shed so soft a light,
Earth’s brightest summer never shone so bright.
 
That sky is not like this sad sky of ours,
    Tinged with earth’s change and care;        10
No shadow dims it, and no rain-cloud lowers;
    No broken sunshine there:
One everlasting stretch of azure pours
Its stainless splendor o’er those sinless shores;
For there Jehovah shines with heavenly ray,        15
And Jesus reigns, dispensing endless day.
 
The dwellers there are not like those of earth,—
    No mortal stain they bear,—
And yet they seem of kindred blood and birth;
    Whence and how came they there?        20
Earth was their native soil; from sin and shame,
Through tribulation, they to glory came;
Bond-slaves delivered from sin’s crushing load,
Brands plucked from burning by the hand of God.
 
Yon robes of theirs are not like those below;        25
    No angel’s half so bright;
Whence came that beauty, whence that living glow,
    And whence that radiant white?
Washed in the blood of the atoning Lamb,
Fair as the light these robes of theirs became;        30
And now, all tears wiped off from every eye,
They wander where the freshest pastures lie,
Through all the nightless day of that unfading sky!
 
 
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