430 CHURCH REVIEW.
WHERE IS VIRTUE?
BY ORISHATUKEH FADUMA.
O ! TELL an earnest soul who seeks the true and pure,
Thou fountain of all good and truth that must endure,
If aught indeed is pure in virtue's sacred name,
Lead me her path to tread, and all her laws proclaim.
The wordling, giddy, gay, she has no fair ideal
To which she can allure me, all is so unreal.
Her pictures, soil'd, deform'd, are often dull and faint;
They vex the right, the good, the realist, the saint.
Admired paintings are, when drawn by skillful hands,
But taste and rule are wronged if brushed by harpies' bands.
Then false and true ate mixed-false touch, no truth, no grace-
No comeliness they add to Nature's beauteous face.
For days, and months, and years, on meditation's height,
The hero's deeds I've scanned, enraptured'at the sight.
To great Saint Paul's I hied--designed by old Sir Wren-
The sanctum of the few, the demigods of men;
With lofty dome, and walls, and columns high and rare,
True mimics of Corinth, all wrought with skill and care.
Here virtue and base vice in strangest guise do blend,
Religion formal doth alternate them attend.
This pantheon of the world, this Graeco-Roman relic
Is vicious good, methinks, and so unapostolic.
Religion's champion here--the daring, true and strong-
The skillful sculptor carv'd, who fought 'gainst every wrong.
The fane with men is decked-the nation's demigods-
The great High Priest of men would strike with emerods.
The messenger of love unites with him of war;
The champion of peace is grimed with bloody scar.
The thirsty, fiery Mars is brandishing his sword
By side of Janus meek, proclaimer of that Word
Whom saints, apostles, seers, oft in days of yore
Have sought, and found, and told, in face of peril sore.
The living stream of truth, and grace, and joy, and love,
And peace, and happiness, all coming from above,
By wicked hands befouled, 'tis hard to find, I wis,
How virtue, lovely, pure, is all bereft of bliss.
List ! earnest seeker, thou, the living truth I say,
Of aught indeed is pure in virtue's lovely way,