Hymn I
Elizabeth Singer Rowe

The glorious armies of the sky
     To thee, O mighty king!
Triumphant anthems consecrate,
     And hallelujahs sing.

But still their most exalted flights
     Fall vastly short of thee;
How distant then must human praise
     From thy perfections be!

Yet how, my God, shall I refrain,
     When to my ravish’d sense
Each creature in its various ways
     Displays thy excellence?

The active lights that shine above,
     In their eternal dance,
Reveal their skilful maker’s praise
     With silent elegance.

The blushes of the morn confess
     That thou are much more fair:
When in the east its beams revive
     To gild the fields of air;

The fragrant, the refreshing breath
     Of ev’ry flow’ry bloom,
In balmy whispers owns from thee
     Their pleasing odours come.

The singing birds, the warbling winds,
     And waters murm’ring fall,
To praise the first almighty cause
     With diff’rent voices call.

Thy num’rous works exalt thee thus,
     And shall I silent be?
No, rather let me cease to breathe,
     Than cease from praising thee.

From Elizabeth Singer Rowe, The Miscellaneous Works in Prose and Verse of Mrs. Elizabeth Rowe, 2 vols. (London, 1739), 1:29-30.

Source: Eighteenth Century Collections Online