On Her Birthday
The repetition of thy gracious years
Brings back once more thy natal morn.
Upon the crest of youth thy life appears,—
A wave upborne.
Amid the hundreds thronging Ocean’s floor
A wave upon the crowded sea
With regular rhythm pushing towards the shore
Our life must be.
The power that moves it is the Ocean’s force
Invincible, eternal, free,
And by that impulse it pursues its course
We, too, by the Eternal Might are led
To whatsoever goal He wills.
Our helm He grasps, our generous sail outspread
His strong breath fills.
Exulting in the grace and strength of youth
Pursue the Ocean’s distant bound,
Trusting the Pilot’s voice, the Master’s ruth
That rings us round.
Rejoice and fear not for the waves that swell,
The storms that thunder, winds that sweep;
Always our Captain holds the rudder well,
He does not sleep.
If in the trough of the enormous sea
Thou canst not find the sky for spray,
Fear never, for our Sun is there with thee
By night and day.
Even those who sink in the victorious flood,
Where do they sink? Into His breast.
He who to some gives victory, joy and good,
To some gives rest.
But thou, look to the radiant days that wait
Beyond the driving rain and storm.
I have seen the vision of a happier fate
Brightening thy form.
Confident of His grace, expect His will;
Let Him lead; though hidden be the bourne,
See Him in all that happens; that fulfil
For which thou wert born.