Hannah More

(1745-1833 / England)

Ode To Charity


O Charity, divinely wise,
Thou meek-ey'd Daughter of the skies
From the pure fountain of eternal light,
Where fair, immutable, and ever bright,
The beatific vision shines,
Where Angel with Archangel joins
In choral songs to sing his praise,
Parent of Life, Ancient of Days,
Who was ere Time existed, shall be
Thro' the wide round of vast Eternity,
O come, thy warm celestial beams impart,
Enlarge my feelings, and expand my heart!

Descend from radiant realms above,
Thou effluence of that boundless love
Whence joy and peace in streams unsully'd flow,
O deign to make thy lov'd abode below!
Tho' sweeter strains adorn'd my tongue
Than Saint conceiv'd or Seraph sung,
And tho' my glowing Fancy caught
Whatever Art or Nature taught,
Yet if this hard unfeeling heart of mine
Ne'er felt thy force, O Charity divine!
An empty shadow Science would be found:
My knowledge ignorance, my wit a sound!

Tho' my prophetic spirit knew
To bring futurity to view,
Without thy aid e'en this would nought avail,
For Tongues shall cease, and Prophecies shall fail.
Come then, thou sweet immortal guest,
Shed thy soft influence o'er my breast,
Bring with thee Faith, divinely bright,
And Hope, fair harbinger of light,
To clear each mist with their pervading ray,
To fit my soul for Heaven, and point the way;
There Perfect Happiness her sway maintains;
For there the God of peace for ever reigns.

Submitted: Thursday, September 16, 2010

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