Oh Thou who hast made this starry Whole,
Who hast fixed on high Thy throne;
Who biddest the Blue above us roll,
And whose sway the planets own!
At Thy bidding she turns, the changing Moon
To her Brother her full-fed fire,
Dimming the Stars with her light, which soon Wanes, as she draws to him nigher.
Thou givest the word, and the westering Star, The Hesper who watched o'er Night's upspringing, Changing his course, shines eastward far, Phosphor now, for the Sun's inbringing.
When the leaves fall fast, 'neath Autumn's blast, Thou shortenest the reign of light. In radiant June Thou scatterest soon The fast-flown hours of night.
The leaves which fled from the cruel North Are with Zephyr's breath returning, And from seeds which the Bear saw dropped in earth Springs the corn for the Dog-star's burning.
Thus all stands fast by Thine old decree,
Nothing wavers in Nature's plan:
In all her changes she bows to Thee: Yea, all stands fast but Man.
Oh! why is the wheel of Fortune rolled,
While guilt Thy vengeance shuns?
Why sit the bad on their thrones of gold, And trample Thine holy ones?
Why doth Virtue skulk where none may see
In the great world's corners dim?
And the just man mark the knave go free, While the penalty falls on him?
No storm the perjurer's soul o'erwhelms,
Serene the false one stands:
He flatters, and Kings of mighty realms Are as clay in his moulding hands.
Oh Ruler! look on these lives of ours,
Thus dashed on Fortune's sea.
Thou rulest the calm eternal Powers, But thine handiwork, too, are we.
Ah! quell these waves with their tossings high;
Let them own Thy bound and ban:
And as Thou rulest the starry sky
Rule also the world of Man!