The Second Touch

Mark 8:25

(To F. N. D. B.)

The blind man, sunk in sordid helplessness,
     A sound of footsteps caught.
"The Healer comes," they cried, and through the press
     The hapless wretch they brought.
With wild hope, born of uttermost distress,
     The healing touch he sought.
A hand readied forth in potent tenderness-­-
     The miracle was wrought.

Strangely he stares. "What dost thou see ?" they cry
     "I see men walk as trees,"
Again the cool hand strokes each aching eye;
     The last dim shadow flees;
Not moving shapes but live men drawing nigh,
     Now glad and clear he sees,
And tells to each how God's own Son came by
     And healed his dire disease.

Dungeoned by self, we too besought His hand,
     Our shuttered eyes to free.
His touch bestowed, vast, stricken crowds we scanned,
     And guessed their misery.
Lord Christ, Thy second touch our hearts demand,
     Each separate soul to see,
His wounds to salve, his wants to understand,
     And lead him home to Thee.