The Voice in the Cathedral by Marie Corelli

marie corelli portraitMarie Corelli was not only an author of many novels but also, a poet.

The following poem is taken from the book “Poems” published after Marie Corelli’s death by her life-long friend Bertha Vyver.

In the foreword, Bertha Vyver wrote “Some of these poems were never published; others are scattered through the various novels that have made her name so familiar to the public.”

The Voice in the Cathedral

Within the old cathedral,
At the hour of prayer,
When the golden tubes of the organ
Poured music in the air:
I knelt alone in the shadow
Of the twilight grey and dim,
Dreamily, drowsily hearing
The sound of the choristers’ hymn –
I hard it, but scarcely listened,
For I was in misery;
Not even the glorious music
Had power to comfort me.

The mighty chorus deepened
And rolled through the arches wide,
Till softer, softer growing,
With one faint chord it died:
The, solemnly and grandly,
Clear on the sudden calm,
Came floating a Voice – one only –
Like an Angel singing a psalm –
A voice so pure and tender,
So rich and loving and low,
That it touched my heart, like an echo
From the land of long ago.

My slumb’ring soul was wakened
As that voice fell on my ears;
My stubborn pride was conquered
And quenched in grateful tears;
My sorrows fled, as Winter
Flies from the smile of May,
And my feeble heart was strengthened
For the dangers on my way.
O Voice divine, though human!
O matchless power of Song!
I shall hear you in my spirit
And love you my whole life long!

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