Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase!)
Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,
And saw, within the moonlight in his room,
Making it rich, and like a lily in bloom,
An angel writing in a book of gold: -
Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,
And to the presence in the room he said,
'What writest thou?'-The vision raised its head,
And with a look made of all sweet accord,
Answered, 'The names of those that love the Lord.'
'And is mine one?' said Abou. 'Nay, not so,'
Replied the angel. Abou spoke more low,
But cheerily still; and said, 'I pray thee, then,
Write me as one that loves his fellow men.'
"I am sorry but That I cannot do
Love of fellow man is wanting in you."
"Then in the book of HE who made us all
Write I loved all HIS creatures great and small"
Then The angel wrote, and vanished. The next night
It came again with a great wakening light,
And showed the names whom love of God had blessed,
And lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.
JHL Hunt 1784¬p;1859
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