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But Thou wilt meet the suppliant eye,
Oh! listen from thy blest abode !
My Father and my God!
Teach me if hope, if joy, be mine,
THE PRAYER OF NATURE.
BY MRS. HEMANS.
FATHER of Light! great God of Heaven'
Hearest thou the accents of despair ? Can guilt like man's be e'er forgiven?
Can vice atone for crimes by prayer ? Father of light, on thee I call!
Thou seest my soul is dark within ; Thou who canst mark the sparrow's fall,
Avert from me the death of sin. No shrine I seek to sects unknown;
Oh point to me the path of truth! Thy dread omnipotence I own;
Spare, yet amend, the faults of youth.
Let superstition hail the pile,
With tales of mystic rites beguile.
To Gothic domes of mouldering stone ? Thy temple is the face of day;
Earth, ocean, heaven, thy boundless throne, Shall man condemn his race to hell
Unless they bend in pompous form ; Tell us that all, for one who fell,
Must perish in the mingling storm?
Shall each pretend to reach the skies,
Yet doom his brother to expire,
Or doctrines less severe inspire ?
Prepare a fancied bliss or wo ?
Their great Creator's purpose know?
Whose years float on in daily crimeShall they by Faith for guilt atone,
And live beyond the bounds of time ? Father! no prophet's laws I seek
Thy laws in Nature's works appear :I own myself corrupt and weak,
Yet will I pray, for thou wilt hear! Thou, who canst guide the wandering star
Through trackless realms of ether's space! Who calmst the elemental war,
Whose hand from pole to pole I trace; Thou, who in wisdom placed me here,
Who, when thou wilt, can take me hence, Ah! whilst I tread this earthly sphere,
Extend to me the wide defence. To thee, my God, to thee I call,
Whatever weal or wo beride,
In thy protection I confide.
My soul shall float on airy wing,
How shall thy glorious name adored
Inspire her feeble voice to sing ! But, if this fleeting spirit share
With clay the grave's éternal bed, While life yet throbs I raise my prayer,
Though doomed no more to quit the dead. To thee I breathe my humble strain,
Grateful for all thy mercies past, And hope, my God, to thee again
This erring life may fly at last.
BY CHARLES FENNO HOFFMAN.
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!" The Eternal spoke,
And from the abyss where darkness rode The earliest dawn of nature broke,
And light around creation flow'd. The glad earth smiled to see the day,
The first-born day, come blushing in; The young day smiled to shed its ray
Upon a world untouch'd by sin. “Let there be light!” O'er heaven and earth,
The God who first the day-beam pour'd, Utter'd again his fiat forth,
And shed the gospel's light abroad,
And, like the dawn, its cheering rays
On rich and poor were meant to fall;
In lowly cot and lordly hall.
Flushes the signal-light for prayer;
From God's bright throne of glory there. Come kneel to him who through the night
Hath watch'd above thy sleeping soul, To Him whose mercies, like his light,
Are shed abroad from pole to pole.