The Traveller's Prayer
Thou guardian of the weak, thou poor man's friend!
Hear from thy glorious throne, Almighty God!
That dost thine aid to fearful trav'lers lend,
The suit of one that journeys on the road!
I am oblig'd I know not where to go,
Nor know I whether I shall ever come,
Since 'tis a country I'm a stranger to,
If thou dost not my journey prosper, home.
Lord, it is Thou, who governest this ball,
And all that is therein thou dost direct ;
So that no mischief ever can befal
The men thou favourest, thy own elect!
I therefore humbly make it my request
That thou in mercy wou'dst my life sustain,
Where-e'er I go, and with thy favour blest,
Bring me in joy and safety back again.
To lead the way, dispatch an angel down,
My solace, and protection to become,
That he my bus'ness with success may crown,
And back again in health conduct me home.
Thy downy wings do thou expand abroad,
Beneath their ample awning shade me still,
Suffer not any foe, upon the road,
To do my soul or body any ill.
Send thou thy servant Raphael to direct
My steps, as he did with Tobias go,
The youth from ev'ry danger to protect,
To guide his feet, and save him from the foe.
Be thou before me, like a cloud, by day,
Like a bright blaze, by night, my God and King,
To light, and bring me safely on my way,
As thou didst Israel erst from Canaan bring.
The eastern sages thou didst erst protect,
And sent'st a star those strangers to attend,
As thou didst their's, do thou my steps direct,
'Till thou hast brought me to my journey's end.
As young Tobias thou didst save of yore,
Both from the river-monster, and the fiend,
So save me, Lord! by thy Almighty Pow'r,
From all the perils, which may me attend.
Preserve me, Lord! from Satan's sweeping net,
And his vile friends, who my best schemes still cross,
Permit them not, by whom I'm thus beset,
To do me hurt, or bring me shame and loss.
Let not loud thunder, or the light'ning glare,
Let not the storm or tempest do me harm,
Let not the wily fiend my soul ensnare,
Nor any violence my heart alarm.
Preserve me from the snares by robbers spread,
O'erflowing rivers, villains that beguile,
A life corrupt, and an adult'rous bed,
The dangers of the road, and comrades vile.
Rouze then my fainting heart within my breast,
Make thou my path, by thy kind furth'rance, plain;
Strengthen my fellow-trav'lers and my beast,
And bring us, to our wishes, back again.
Success to all we undertake, impart,
And expedite the business and design
Of ev'ry one that has an honest heart,
That all, to bless thy holy name, may join.
Preserve us, Lord! from harm and ill success,
Mischance, miscarriage, misery, mishap,
Damage, disease, disaster, and distress,
Loss of the road, or any dang'rous scrape.
Conduct us back again in health, O God!
Our dear relations and our friends among;
That we thy name may, for thy aid, applaud,
And sing thy praises in some sacred song.
Rees Prichard's Other Poems
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