It’s oh in Paradise that I fain would be,
Away from earth and weariness and all beside;
Earth is too full of loss with its dividing sea,
But Paradise upbuilds the bower for the bride.
Where flowers are yet in bud while the boughs are green,
I would get quit of earth and get robed for heaven;
Putting on my raiment white within the screen,
Putting on my crown of gold whose gems are seven
Fair is the fourfold river that maketh no moan,
Fair are the trees fruit-bearing of the wood,
Fair are the gold and bdellium and the onyx stone,
And I know the gold of that land is good.
O my love, my dove, lift up your eyes
Toward the eastern gate like an opening rose;
You and I who parted will meet in Paradise,
Pass within and sing when the gates unclose.
This life is but the passage of a day,
This life is but a pang and all is over;
But in the life to come which fades not away
Every love shall abide and every lover.
He who wore out pleasure and mastered all lore,
Solomon, wrote “Vanity of vanities:”
Down to death, of all that went before
In his mighty long life, the record is this.
With loves by the hundred, wealth beyond measure,
Is this he who wrote “Vanity of vanities”?
Yea, “Vanity of vanities” he saith of pleasure,
And of all he learned set his seal to this.
Yet we love and faint not, for our love is one,
And we hope and flag not, for our hope is sure,
Although there be nothing new beneath the sun
And no help for life and for death no cure.
The road to death is life, the gate of life is death,
We who wake shall sleep, we shall wax who wane;
Let us not vex our souls for stoppage of a breath,
The fall of a river that turneth not again.
Be the road short, and be the gate near,—
Shall a short road tire, a strait gate appall?
The loves that meet in Paradise shall cast out fear,
And Paradise hath room for you and me and all.