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"A Bruised Reed Shall He Not Break"
by Christina Rossetti
This poem was published in 1862 in Goblin Market and Other Poems.

I will accept thy will to do and be,
   Thy hatred and intolerance of sin,
   Thy will at least to love, that burns within
      And thirsteth after Me:
So will I render fruitful, blessing still,
   The germs and small beginnings in thy heart,
   Because thy will cleaves to the better part.—
      Alas, I cannot will.

Dost not thou will, poor soul? Yet I receive
   The inner unseen longings of the soul,
   I guide them turning towards Me; I control
      And charm hearts till they grieve:
If thou desire, it yet shall come to pass,
   Though thou but wish indeed to choose My love;
   For I have power in earth and heaven above.—
      I cannot wish, alas!

What, neither choose nor wish to choose? and yet
   I still must strive to win thee and constrain:
   For thee I hung upon the cross in pain,
      How then can I forget?
If thou as yet dost neither love, nor hate,
   Nor choose, nor wish,—resign thyself, be still
   Till I infuse love, hatred, longing will.—
      I do not deprecate.


PD-icon This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

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