Felicia Dorothea Hemans

(25 September 1793 – 16 May 1835 / Liverpool, England)

Hymn


OH, Thou! before whose radiant shrine,
Entranc'd, adoring seraphs bend;
Eternal source of light divine!
Wilt Thou thy hallow'd ear incline!
And mortal pray'r attend?
Yes, Father! yes, benignant Pow'r!
Around Thee beams fair Mercy's purest ray;
No awful terrors round Thee low'r,
Save when, in Judgment's dreaded hour,
Thou bidst Creation tremble and obey!

Then, rob'd in darkness and in clouds,
That solemn veil thy glory shrouds;
Chaos and night thy dark pavilion form;
Thy spirit on the whirlwind rides,
Impels the unresisting tides,
Glares in the lightning, rushes in the storm!

But Thou wilt meet the suppliant eye,
And Thou wilt mark the lowly sigh;
And Thou the holy tear wilt see,
Which penitence devotes to Thee;
That sigh thy breezes waft to heav'n,
That holy tear is grateful incense giv'n
Low, humble, sad, to Thee I bend,
Oh! listen from thy blest abode!
And though celestial hymns ascend,
Oh! deign a mortal's prayer attend,
My Father and my GOD!

Teach me if hope, if joy, be mine,
To bless thy bounteous hand divine;
And still, with trembling homage, raise
The grateful pæan of exalted praise!

When deep affliction wounds my soul,
Still let me own thy mild control;
Teach me, submissive and resign'd,
To calm the tempest of the mind;
To lift the meek, adoring eye,
Suppress the tear and hush the sigh;
Gaze on one bright, unclouded star,
And hail 'the day-spring' from afar,
Bid angel-faith dispel surrounding gloom,
And soar, on cherub-wing—beyond the tomb.

Submitted: Thursday, April 08, 2010

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