The gentleness of heaven encompass thee

The gentleness of heaven encompass thee
As night enfolds thy bed ; sleep now secure ,
The armour of thy soul laid by till dawn .
Round thee four angels , ever vigilant
This night stand steadfastly ;
Their wings , as thy soul pure ,
Soft as the feathered snow now drifting down
Austerely , delicately ,
Wrap all the room in silence infinite .

Most greatly loved , most greatly worth the loving ,
Sleep on , and take thy rest : my heart with thee
Lies wrapped in feathered silence till the dawn .
My chastened thoughts now lend thy chastity
A snowcold covering .
No other love for me
Had ever life : when life and time are done ,
All longing , all remembering ,
I look to love thee in eternity

28 January 1954