1 Hues of the rich unfolding morn,
That ere the glorious sun be born,
By some soft touch invisible
Around his path are taught to swell!
2 Thou rustling breeze, so fresh and gay,
That dancest forth at opening day,
And brushing by with joyous wing,
Wakenest each little leaf to sing.
3 Ye fragrant clouds of dewy steam,
By which deep grove and tangled stream
Pay, for soft rains in seasons given,
Their tribute to the genial heaven.
4 Why waste your treasures of delight
Upon our thankless, joyous sight,
Who day by day to sin awake,
Seldom of Heaven and you partake?
5 Oh! timely happy, timely wise,
Hearts that with rising morn arise!
Eyes that the beam celestial view,
Which evermore makes all things new!
6 New every morning is the love
Our wakening and uprising prove;
Through sleep and darkness safely brought,
Restored to life and power and thought.
7 New mercies, each returning day,
Hover around us while we pray;
New perils past, new sins forgiven,
New thoughts of God, new hopes of Heaven.
8 If, on our daily course, our mind
Be set to hallow all we find,
New treasures still, of countless price,
God will provide for sacrifice.
9 Old friends, old scenes, will lovelier be,
As more of Heaven in each we see;
Some softening gleam of love and prayer
Shall dawn on every cross and care.
10 As for some dear familiar strain
Untired we ask, and ask again,
Ever, in its melodious store,
Finding a spell unheard before;
11 Such is the bliss of souls serene,
When they have sworn, and steadfast mean,
Counting the cost, in all t’espy
Their God, in all themselves deny.
12 Oh could we learn that sacrifice,
What lights would all around us rise!
How would our hearts with wisdom talk
Along life’s dullest, dreariest walk!
13 We need not bid, for cloistered cell,
Our neighbor and our work farewell,
Nor strive to find ourselves too high
For sinful man beneath the sky.
14 The trivial round, the common task,
Will furnish all we ought to ask;
Room to deny ourselves, a road
To bring us daily nearer God.
15 Seek we no more; content with these,
Let present rapture, comfort, ease—
As Heaven shall bid them, come and go:
The secret this of rest below.
16 Only, O Lord, in Thy dear love,
Fit us for perfect rest above,
And help us, this and every day,
To live more nearly as we pray.
Source: The Cyber Hymnal #1149
Hues of the rich unfolding morn. J. Keble. [Morning.] Written Sept. 20, 1822, and first published in his Christian Year, 1827, as the opening poem, in 16 stanzas of 4 lines. From it the following centos have come into common use:—
1. Hues of the rich unfolding morn. (stanza i.) In a few collections.
2. O! timely happy, timely wise. (stanza v.) This is in a large number of hymn-books.
3. New every morning is the love. (stanza vi.) This cento of various lengths is in extensive use in Great Britain and America, and, as a hymn, it ranks as one of the most popular of Keble's compositions. This is translated into Latin by K. Bingham, in his Hymnologia Christiana Latina, 1871, as "Omni oriente die lecto quum surgimus, horas."
4. If on our daily course our mind. (stanza viii.) In several collections.
5. At for some dear familiar strain. (stanza x.) In limited use.
The whole poem was given in Dr. Martineau's Hymns, &c, 1840; and again in his Hymns of Praise & Prayer, 1873.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)