1 Along the banks where Babel's current flows,
Our captive bands in deep despondence stray'd,
While Zion's fall in sad remembrance rose,
Her friends her children mingled with the dead.
2 The tuneless harp, that once with joy we strung,
When praise employ'd and mirth inspir'd the lay,
In mournful silence on the willows hung;
And growing grief prolong'd the tedious day.
3 The barbarous tyrants, to increase the woe,
With taunting smiles a song of Sion claim;
Bid sacred praise in strains melodious flow,
While they blaspheme the great Jehovah's name.
4 But how, in heathen chains and lands unknown,
Shall Israel's sons, a song of Zion raise?
O hapless Salem, God's terrestrial throne,
Thou land of glory. sacred mount of praise!
5 If e'er my mem'ry lose thy lovely name,
If my cold heart neglect my kindred race,
Let dire destruction seize this guilty frame;
My hand shall perish and my voice shall cease.
6 Yet shall the Lord, who hears when Zion calls,
O'ertake her foes with terror and dismay,
His arm avenge her desolated walls,
And raise her children to eternal day.
|First Line:||Along the banks where Babel's current flows|