Esther M. (Clark) Hill

This, that my hand must never touch;
This, that my eyes must never see;
This, that my heart has craved so much;
This, that was never meant for me;

I will not say, that the world may hear:
"I have not longed for it, no, not I!"
I will say: "Though lovely and fair and dear,
It is mine to conquer and put it by."

* * * * *

Now, mine the sacrifice, mine the pain
And the bitterness till the struggle cease.
Then, mine the glory and mine the gain,
And mine the triumph, and mine the peace.

O hand, be steady! O heart, be strong!
'Tis not for this we shall faint and die!
Though tempted sorely and tempted long,
It is ours to conquer and put it by.

* * * * *

"But what of thy dearest?" saith One to me,
(In the Time-To-Be, when the years are done)
"The earth-thing, dearly beloved of thee,
Thy heart's one treasure, or hath it one?"

O white the lips that have kissed the rod,
But strong the heart that shall make reply:
"I am what I am, by the grace of God,
And the strength that conquered, and put it by."

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