Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. IV. The Higher Life
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume IV. The Higher Life.  1904.
VII. Death: Immortality: Heaven
The Answer
          “WHO would not go”
With buoyant steps, to gain that blessed portal,
  Which opens to the land we long to know?
Where shall be satisfied the soul’s immortal,
  Where we shall drop the wearying and the woe        5
          In resting so?
          “Ah, who would fear?”
Since, sometimes through the distant pearly portal,
  Unclosing to some happy soul a-near,
We catch a gleam of glorious light immortal,        10
  And strains of heavenly music faintly hear,
          Breathing good cheer!
          “Who would endure”
To walk in doubt and darkness with misgiving,
  When he whose tender promises are sure—        15
The Crucified, the Lord, the Ever-living—
  Keeps us those “mansions” evermore secure
          By waters pure?
          Oh, wondrous land!
Fairer than all our spirit’s fairest dreaming:        20
  “Eye hath not seen,” no heart can understand
The things prepared, the cloudless radiance streaming.
  How longingly we wait our Lord’s command—
          His opening hand!
          O dear ones there!        25
Whose voices, hushed, have left our pathway lonely,
  We come, erelong, your blessèd home to share;
We take the guiding hand, we trust it only—
  Seeing, by faith, beyond this clouded air,
          That land so fair!        30

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