Verse > John Greenleaf Whittier > The Poetical Works in Four Volumes
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John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–1892).  The Poetical Works in Four Volumes.  1892.
 
Appendix II. Poems Printed in the ‘Life of Whittier’
A Fragment: “The dreadful burden of our sins we feel”
 
          [Found among Mr. Whittier’s papers, in his handwriting, but undated.]

THE DREADFUL burden of our sins we feel,
The pain of wounds which Thou alone canst heal,
To whom our weakness is our strong appeal.
 
From the black depths, the ashes, and the dross
Of our waste lives, we reach out to Thy cross,        5
And by its fullness measure all our loss!
 
That holy sign reveals Thee: throned above
No Moloch sits, no false, vindictive Jove—
Thou art our Father, and Thy name is Love! 1
 
Note 1. This is an alternative reading which has been cancelled:—
  “No lawless Terror dwells in light above,
Cruel as Moloch, deaf and false as Jove—
Thou art our Father, and Thy name is Love!”
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