THE LAND BETWEEN

Between the little here and larger Yonder,
   There is a realm (or so one day I read)
Where faithful spirits love enchained, may wander,
   Till some remembering soul from earth has fled;
Then, reunited, they go forth afar,
From sphere to sphere, where wondrous angels are.

Not many spirits in that realm are waiting;
   Not many pause, upon its shores to rest,
For only love, intense and unabating,
   Can hold them from the longer, higher quest:
And after grief has wept itself to sleep,
Few hearts on earth their vital memories keep.

Should I pass on, across the mystic border,
   Let thy love link me to that pallid land?
I would not seek the heavens of finer order,
   Until thy bark had left the coarser strand.
How desolate such journeyings would be,
Though straight to Him, if taken without thee!

Wert thou first called (dear God, how could I bear it!)
   I should enchain thee with my love, I know.
Not brave enough am I to free thy spirit
   From all these tender ties, and bid thee go.
Nor would a soul, unselfish as thine own,
Forget so soon, and speed to heaven alone.

On earth we find no joy in ways diverging;
   How could we find it in the worlds unseen?
I know old memories in my bosom surging
   Would keep thee waiting in that Land Between,
Until, together, side by side, we trod
A path of stars, in our great search for God.

By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.

Cosmopolitan 44 (Dec. 1907): 139.


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