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O sad, sweet Tree,
Both weep and sing in shade of thee.
And graft into thy gracious stock
Of all the ransomed World, Thou hadst the power (In that propitious hour)
To poise each precious limb,
And prove how light the World was, when it weighed with Him.
Wide mayest thou spread
Thine arms, and with Thy bright and blissful head
Lo, we adore Thee,
Dread Lamb, and bow thus low before Thee.
'Cause by the covenant of Thy cross
Thou hast saved at once the whole World's loss.
1 The mountains of Libanus are to the extreme north of Palestine, and famous for cedars. This probably 'means that the Cross having borne our Saviour is greater than all other trees.
O Lord JESU CHRIST, Son of the living God, etc.
LORD, by Thy sweet and saving Sign,
Defend us from our foes and Thine. V. Thou shalt open my lips, O Lord,
R. And my mouth shall shew forth Thy praise. V. O God, make speed to save me.›
R. O Lord, make haste to help me.
V. Glory be, etc.
R. As it was, etc.
The Compline hour comes last, to call
Ah, heartless task! yet Hope takes head,
Run, Mary, run! bring hither all the blest
Pour on thy noblest sweets, which, when they touch
But must Thy bed, Lord, be a borrowed grave,
1 Cf. "All the perfumes of Arabia "—Macbeth; and John xii. 3.
O save us then,
Since Thou wouldst needs be thus
A Saviour, and at such a rate,1 for us;
We now will own no shorter wish, nor name a
Thy Blood bids us be bold,
Thy Wounds give us fair hold,
Thy Cross, Thy Nature, and Thy Name
And cry with one accord,
Save them, O save them, Lord!
These Hours, and that which hovers o'er my end, Into Thy hands and heart, Lord, I commend.
Take both to Thine account, that I and mine,
That as I dedicate my devoutest breath
So from His living, and life-giving death,
1 Terrible payment, price.
THE HYMN OF THE HOLY CROSS
OOK up, languishing soul! Lo, where the fair
Thy life is one long debt
Of love to Him, Who on this painful Tree 1
Lo, how the streams of life, from that full nest,
Flow in an amorous flood
Of water wedding blood.
With these He wash'd thy stain, transferr'd thy
And took it home to His own Heart.
But though great Love, greedy of such sad gain, Usurp'd the portion of thy pain,
And from the nails and spear Turn'd the steel point of fear: Their use is changed, not lost; and
Not stings of wrath, but wounds of love. 1 Cross.
Tall Tree of life! thy truth makes good
It was thy wood he meant should make the throne
Large throne of Love, royally spread
Thy crime is too much duty,
Even balance of both worlds; our world of sin,
Hail, our alone hope! let thy fair head shoot
Grow thou and they. And be thy fair increase