Hymn 398. Longing for Immortality

Sad prisoners in a house of clay,

With sins, and griefs, and pains opprest,

We groan the lingering hours away,

And wish, and long to be releast.

Nor is it liberty alone,

Which prompts our restless ardent sighs;

For immortality we groan,

For robes and mansions in the skies.

Eternal mansions! bright array!

O blest exchange! transporting thought!

Free from th’ approaches of decay,

Or the least shadow of a spot!

There shall mortality no more

Its wide extended empire boast,

Forgotten all its dreadful power,

In life’s unbounded ocean lost.

Bright world of bliss! O could I see

One shining glimpse, one cheerful ray

(Fair dawn of immortality!)

Break through these tottering walls of clay.

Jesus, in thy dear name I trust,

My light, my life, my Saviour God;

When this frail house dissolves in dust,

O raise me to thy bright abode.

Collection of Hymns Adapted to Public Worship, no. 398 (all six stanzas); Poems, 1780, vol. 1, pp. 104-5; MS, Steele Collection, Angus Library, Regents Park College, STE 3/1/1 no. 61; also Nonconformist Women Writers, vol. 1, pp. 104-05.