F. I. Darling

 

A bud the gard’ner gave me,

A fair and lovely child,

He gave it for my keeping.

To cherish undefiled.

It lay upon my bosom.

It was my joy and pride,

Perhaps it was an idol

Which I must be denied.

 

For just as it was opening

In glory to the day,

Down came the heavenly gard’ner

And took my bud away;

Yet not in wrath he took it.

A smile was on His face.

And tenderly and kindly

He bore it from its place.

 

“Fear not” methought He whispered,

“Thy bud shall be restored,

I take it but to plant it

In the garden of my Lord;”

And bade me not to sorrow

As those who hopeless weep,

For He who gave hath taken

And He who took can keep.

 

And night and morn together

By the open gate of prayer,

I’ll go unto my darling

And sit beside him there;

I know for me ‘twill open

Poor sinner though I be,

For He who guards and keeps it

Will keep my bud for me.

 

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