Richard Garnett

The Taper

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This little light is not a little sign
Of duteous service innocent of blame,
Contented with obscurity till came
Mandate that as a star her beam should shine.
On sickness did she wait, or scribe, or shrine,
The law of her beneficence the same,
Somewhat to sunder from her fragile frame,
Something of her own being to resign.
So wasted now, that, let the lustre be
Resummoned but once more, the fuel dies;
Yet virtues six dorn her brevity,
Singly too seldom met of mortal eyes;
Discretion, faithfulness, frugality,
Purity, vigilance, self-sacrifice.

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Richard Garnett