They are all gone into the world of light!
And I alone sit ling’ring here;
Their very memory is fair and bright,
And my sad thoughts doth clear.
It glows and glitters in my cloudy breast,
Like stars upon some gloomy grove,
Or those faint beams in which this hill is dress’d,
After the sun’s remove.
I see them walking in an air of glory,
Whose light doth trample on my days:
My days, which are at best but dull and hoary,
Mere glimmering and decays.
And yet, as angels in some brighter dreams
Call to the soul when man doth sleep,
So some strange thoughts transcend our wonted themes,
And into glory peep.
They Are All Gone into the World of Light (part 1) by Henry Vaughan, 1622 – 1695.
Vaughan, as well as a poet, was an astronomer. Even among the hills of Vaughan’s rural Wales, today’s night skies are polluted by street and other lights, making it harder for us to ‘into glory peep’ unless we allow ‘strange thoughts’ to ‘transcend our wonted themes’.
Let us pray indeed that our loved ones have ‘gone into the world of light’ and with confidence in God’s mercy, let our sad thoughts clear as we look forward to joining them with him.