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Or if you rather choose the rural shade,
And find a fane in every sacred grove;
There let the shepherd's flute; the virgin's lay,
The prompting seraph, and the poet's lyre,
Still sing the God of Seasons, as they roll.
For me, when I forget the darling theme,
Whether the blossom blows, the summer ray
Russets the plain, inspiring autumn gleams,
Or winter rises in the blackening east;
Be my tongue mute, my fancy paint no more,
And, dead to joy, forget my heart to beat.
Should fate command me to the farthest verge
Of the green earth, to distant barbarous climes,
Rivers unknown to song; where first the sun
Gilds Indian mountains, or his setting heam
Flames on th' Atlantic isles ; 'tis nought to me
Since God is ever present, ever felt,
In the void waste, as in the city full;
And where He vital breathes there must be joy.
When even at last the solemn hour shall come,
And wing my mystic flight to future worlds,
I cheerful will obey; there, with new powers,
Will rising wonders sing : I cannot go
Where universal love not smiles around,
Sustaining all yon orbs, and all their suns,
From seeming evil still educing good,
And better thence again, and better still,
In infinite progression. But I lose
Myself in Him, in light ineffable!
Come then, expressive silence, muse His praise.
Ye works of God, on him alone,
In earth his footstool, heav'n his throne,
Be all your praise bestow'd;
Whose hand the beauteous fabric made;
Whose eye the finish'd work survey'd,
And saw that all was good.
Ye angels, who with loud acclaim
Admiring, view'd the new-born frame,
And hail'd th' eternal King ;
Again proclaim your Maker's praise,
Again your thankful voices raise,
And touch the tuneful string.
Praise him, ye bright etherial plains,
Where in full majesty he deigns
To fix his awful throne;
Ye waters, that above them roll,
From orb to orb, from pole to pole,
Oh make his praises known.
Thrones, dominations, virtues, pow’rs,
Oh join your joyful songs with ours,
With us your voices raise :
From age to age,
from day to day, To Heav'n's eternal Monarch pay
Hymns of eternal praise.
Celestial orb, whose pow'rful ray
Opes the glad eyelids of the day,
Whose influence all things own;
Praise him, whose courts effulgent shine
With light, as far excelling thine,
As thine the paler moon.
Ye glittering planets of the sky,
Whose beams the absent sun supply,
With him the song pursue ;
And let himself submissive own,
He borrows from a brighter sun,
The light he lends to you.
Ye show'rs and dews, whose moisture shed
Calls into life the op'ning seed,
To him your praises yield;
Whose influence wakes the genial birth,
Drops fatness on the pregnant earth,
And crowns the laughing field.
Ye winds that oft tempestuous sweep
The ruffled surface of the deep,
With us confess
God: See through the heavens the King of kings, Upborne on your expanded wings,
Comes flying all abroad.
Ye floods of fire, whene'er ye flow,
With just submission humbly bow
To his superior pow'r;
Who stops the tempest on its way,
Or bids the flaming deluge stay,
And gives it strength to roar.
Ye Summer's heat and Winter's cold,
By turns, in long succession roll’d,
The drooping world to cheer;
Praise him, who gave the sun and moon,
To lead the various seasons on,
And guide the circling year.
Ye frosts that bind the wat’ry plain,
Ye silent showers of fleecy rain,
Pursue the heav'nly theme;
Praise him, who sheds the driving snow,
Forbids the harden'd waves to flow,
And stops the rapid stream.
Ye days and nights, that swiftly borne
From morn to eve, from eve to morn,
Alternate glide away;
Praise him, whose never-varying light,
Absent, adds horror to the night,
But, present, gives the day,
Light, from whose rays all beauty springs,
Darkness, whose wide-expanded wings
Involve the dusky globe:
Praise him, who, when the heavens he spread,
Darkness his thick pavilion made,
And light his regal robe.
Praise him, ye lightnings, as ye fly,
Wing'd with hot vengeance through the sky,
And red with wrath divine;
Praise him, ye clouds, that wand'ring stray,
Or, fix'd by him in close array,
Surround bis awful shrine.
EXALT, O earth, thy heav'nly King,
Who bids the plants that from thee spring,
With annual verdure bloom;
Whose frequent drops of kindly rain
Prolific swell the rip’ning grain,
And bless thy fertile womb.
Ye mountains, that ambitious rise,
And lift your summits to the skies,
Revere his awful nod;
Think how ye once affrighted fled,
While Jordan sought his fountain head,
And own'd th' approaching God.
Ye trees that fill the rural scene;
Ye flowers that o'er th' enamell’d green
In native beauty reign ;
O praise the Ruler of the skies,
Whose hand the genial sap supplies,
And clothes the thankful plain.
Ye secret springs, and gentle rills,
That murmuring rise among the hills,
Or fill the humbler vale;
Praise him, at whose Almighty nod
The rugged rock dissolving flow'd,
And formed a springing well.
Praise him, ye floods, and seas profound,
Whose waves the spacious earth surround,
And roll from shore to shore;
Aw'd by his voice, ye seas, subside,
Ye floods within your channels glide,
And tremble, and adore.