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There was a night when the Lord lay dead,
And darkness brooded o'er land and sea;
When stars were pale, and the wind swept down
With a moaning breath o'er Galilee.
A fateful night, in a world amazed,
When hope fled far like a ghost alone,
And He, the mighty to love and save,
Lay thralled by death in a grave of stone;
Folded and calm
Each wounded palm,
While over his silence the earth made moan.


That night the word of the prophets seemed
To the bravest soul but a mocking lie,
While vision of faith, nor might of love
Could tell why the Lord of life should die.
Hushed was the song
Of the angel throng,
As they looked on the Hope of the ages then,
Wounded and marred by the wrath of men.


Slowly the night when the Lord lay dead
Swung to the dawn of another day,
Till a fair, sweet hue with a tender touch
Warmed like a blush through the solemn gray;
But the world slept on, and no one knew
What feet in the shadows had been abroad,
And no one heard when in heaven they sang,
"Christ is risen, give glory to God."


Nobody knew till the women came
And found that the stone was rolled away,
Nobody knew, till the angel spake,
"Behold He is risen! see where he lay!
Go, tell his brethren, their eyes shall see,
"He goeth to meet them in Galilee."


Nobody saw until Mary came,
Mary redeemed from the loss of sin,
Weeping for love at the open tomb,
Seeking her Lord in the morning dim.
Eager the question upon her lip,
She spoke it out to the shining guard,--
Fearless of angels, careless of men,--
"Where have they borne him? I seek my Lord."
Nobody heard, till the Master's voice
Uttered her name in the silence sweet,
The soul most loving was first to know
Death was vanquished and life complete.


Then over the world the Easter morn
Broke in its beauty on sea and shore;
"He is arisen!" the wide earth sang--
"He is alive! and forever more!"
Swiftly the glow on the solemn gray
Changed to the flash of an opal sky,
The shadows lifted and fled away--
Christ had arisen! no more to die!


The sweet birds sang in the fragrant wood,
The strong birds sang o'er the shining sea;
Out bloomed the lily and asphodel,
And Hope came back with her melody.
So the Easter day
To the world was given,
With its thrilling song,--
"The Lord has risen."
And through the centuries yet we see
The glory that shone in Galilee.


Bring, then, the lilies
Fragrant and fair,
Wreathe all the altars
Hallowed by prayer.
Sing the high song on the first Easter given,--
"He is not here! the Lord has arisen!"


Bring the sweet roses,
In splendor of bloom,
Seek him no more
In the hush of the tomb.
Bring all your heart to his feet and adore,--
Lo, he is risen, and reigns evermore.