1 Oft have I sat in secret Sighs,
To feel my Flesh decay,
Then groan'd aloud with frighted Eyes,
To view the tott'ring Clay.
2 But I forbid my Sorrows now,
Nor dares the Flesh complain;
Diseases bring their Profit too;
The Joy o'ercomes the Pain.
3 My chearful Soul now all the Day
Sits waiting here and sings;
Looks thro' the ruins of her Clay,
And practises her Wings.
4 Faith almost changes into Sight,
While from afar the spies,
Her fair Inheritance, in Light
Above created Skies.
5 Had but the Prison Walls been strong,
And firm without a Flaw,
In Darkness she had dwelt too long,
And less of Glory saw:
6 But now the everlasting Hills
Thro' ev'ry Chink appear,
And something of the Joy she feels
While she's a Prisoner here:
7 The shines of Heav'n rush sweetly in
At all the gaping Flaws:
Visions of endless Bliss are seen
And Native Air the draws.
8 O may these Walls stand tott'ring still,
The Breaches never close!
If I must here in Darkness dwell,
And all this Glory lose!
9 Or rather let this Flesh decay,
The Ruins wider grow,
Till glad to see th' enlarged Way,
I stretch my Pinions through.
Source: The Christians Duty, exhibited, in a series of Hymns: collected from various authors, designed for the worship of God, and for the edification of Christians (1st Ed.) #CCIII