Edith Nesbit

15 August 1858 – 4 May 1924 / Kennington / Surrey / England

Absolution Ii

UNBIND thine eyes, with thine own soul confer,
Look on the sins that made thy life unclean,
Behold how poor thy vaunted virtues were,
How weak thy faith, thy deeds how small and mean,
How far from thy high dreams thy life hath been,
How poor thy use of all thou hast received,
How little of all God's glory thou hast seen,
How misconstrued that which thou hast perceived.
Turn not thine eyes away from thine unworth,
The cup of shame drink to the bitter lees;
And when thou art lowered to the least on earth,
And in the dust makest common cause with these,
Then shall kind arms enfold thee, bringing peace,
The Earth, thy Mother, shall assuage thy pain,
Her woods and fields, Her quiet streams and seas
Shall touch thy soul, and make thee whole again.
But if thy heart holds fast one secret sin,
If one vile script thy soul shrinks to erase,
The mighty Mother cannot bring thee in
Unto the happy, holy, healing place;
But thou shalt weep in darkness, out of grace,
And miss the light of beauty undefiled;
For he who would behold Her, face to face,
Must be in spirit as a little child.
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