Has light now set beyond the Western sky?
All men, debased, lack hope to win the world;
in supplications, even Christians sigh,
for in old age our faith is inward — curled.

My prayers cause men to boast: “he intercedes
for holy purposes!” (or, change of fate?);
but “Lord, have mercy”s are my only beads —
the rosary I weakly generate.

With Gregory, I – hopeless queries! – doubt,
and ask Macrina why the soul, unseen,
appears so dead, and long endures its drought;
she looks with pity on my face, serene;

“Why, pagan-like do you despair, in tears?
What little ills your soul’s great house has stored,
while God alone divides and weaves the years!”
O rend your garments, Soul. Have mercy, Lord.


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