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Treasury of Sacred Song
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CXLIX

THE ASPIRATION

J. Norris

How long, great GOD, how long must I

Immured in this dark prison lie;

Where at the grates and avenues of sense,

My soul must watch to have intelligence;

Where but faint gleams of Thee salute my sight,

Like doubtful moonshine in a cloudy night:

When shall I leave this magic sphere,

And be all mind, all eye, all ear?

How cold this clime! And yet my sense

Perceives e'en here Thy influence.

E'en here Thy strong magnetic charms I feel,

And pant and tremble like the amorous steel.

To lower good, and beauties less divine,

Sometimes my erroneous needle does decline,

But yet, so strong the sympathy,

It turns, and points again to Thee.

I long to see this excellence

Which at such distance strikes my sense.

My impatient soul struggles to disengage

Her wings from the confinement of her cage.

Wouldst thou, great Love, this prisoner once set free,

How would she hasten to be link'd to Thee!

She'd for no angels' conduct stay,

But fly, and love-on, all the way.

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