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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By Hymns. VI. “Who yonder on the desert heath”

Reginald Heber (1783–1826)

(Thirteenth Sunday after Trinity)

“WHO yonder on the desert heath,

Complains in feeble tone?”

—“A pilgrim in the vale of Death,

Faint, bleeding, and alone!”

“How cam’st thou to this dismal strand

Of danger, grief, and shame?”

—“From blessèd Sion’s holy land,

By Folly led, I came!”

“What ruffian hand hath stript thee bare?

Whose fury laid thee low?”

—“Sin for my footsteps twined her snare,

And Death has dealt the blow!”

“Can art no medicine for thy wound,

Nor nature strength supply?”

—“They saw me bleeding on the ground,

And pass’d in silence by!”

“But, sufferer! is no comfort near,

Thy terrors to remove?”

—“There is to whom my soul was dear,

But I have scorn’d His love.”

“What if His hand were nigh to save

From endless Death thy days?”

—“The soul He ransom’d from the grave

Should live but to His praise!”

“Rise then, oh rise! His health embrace,

With heavenly strength renew’d;

And, such as is thy Saviour’s grace,

Such be thy gratitude!”