Scripture Verse

Before me was a throne…and the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and carnelian. Revelation 4:2–3


Autumn Landscape with Rainbow
Jacob Cats (1741–1799)

Words: Ol­iv­er W. Holmes, Sr., 1848. Pub­lished in the At­lan­tic Month­ly, De­cem­ber 1859, at the end of Holmes’ Pro­fess­or at the Break­fast Ta­ble.

Music: Lou­van Vir­gil C. Tay­lor, Cho­ral An­thems (Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts: 1850) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Tay­lor (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),

Oliver W. Holmes, Sr. (1809–1894)


And so my year’s re­cord is fin­ished. Thanks to all those friends who from time to time have sent their mes­sag­es of kind­ly re­cog­ni­tion and fel­low-feel­ing. Peace to all such as may have been vexed in spir­it by any ut­ter­ance the pag­es have re­peat­ed. They will doubt­less for­get for the mom­ent the dif­fer­enc­es in the hues of truth we look at through our hu­man prisms, and join in sing­ing (in­ward­ly) this hymn to the Source of the light we all need to lead us and the warmth which can make us all bro­thers.

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.


Lord of all be­ing! thron­èd afar,
Thy glo­ry flames from sun and star;
Center and soul of ev­ery sphere,
Yet to each lov­ing heart how near!

Sun of our life, Thy quick­en­ing ray,
Sheds on our path the glow of day;
Star of our hope, Thy soft­ened light
Cheers the long watch­es of the night.

Our mid­night is Thy smile with­drawn;
Our noon­tide is Thy gra­cious dawn;
Our rain­bow arch Thy mer­cy’s sign;
All, save the clouds of sin, are Thine!

Lord of all life, below, above,
Whose light is truth, whose warmth is love,
Before Thy ev­er-blaz­ing throne
We ask no lus­ter of our own.

Grant us Thy truth to make us free,
And kind­ling hearts that burn for Thee,
Till all Thy liv­ing al­tars claim
One ho­ly light, one heav­en­ly flame!