There is a river pure and bright,
Whose streams make glad the heavenly plains,
Where, in eternity of light,
The City of our God remains.
Built by the word of His command,
With His unclouded presence blest,
Firm as His throne, the bulwarks stand;
There is our home, our hope, our rest.
Thither let fervent faith aspire;
Our treasure and our heart be there:
Oh! for a seraph's wing of fire!
No,--on the mightier wings of prayer,--
We reach at once that last retreat,
And, ranged among the ransom'd throng,
Fall with the elders at His feet,
Whose Name alone inspires their song.
Ah! soon, how soon! our spirits droop;
Unwont the air of heaven to breathe;
Yet God, in very deed, will stoop,
And dwell Himself with men beneath.
Come to thy living temples, then,
As in the ancient times appear;
Let earth be Paradise again,
And man, O God! thine image here.
Sacred Poems and Hymns