BETA

WHO RIDETH UPON THE WINGS OF THE WIND.”

My God, who makest all Thy winds to blow,1
Whether our foolish wills desire or no ;2
Thanks be to Thee that this is so !3
Thy sharp-wheel’d chariot from the shuddering East4
Thou drivest : and the lowering clouds are gone,5
And the keen air shines clear,6
Smiting like fear ;7
And every man and every trembling beast8
That Thou dost blow upon9
Must cry to Thee to cease,10
And give them peace :11
But Thou, who lovest, heedest not their moan.12
For in her loathsome lair13
Disease sits crouching there,14
A foul and spotted thing, more dreadful than the dead !15
And when Thine East wind rides16
Over her shrinking sides17
She shrieks and cowers, and all her hideous power is fled !18
Yea, call Thy fierce East wind and bid it blow,19
And it shall bless us so.20
And Thine the stormy breath of the far North,21
Where ice-fields glitter and where snows abide,22
And all the fast-lock’d seas their frozen secrets hide.23
Thence do Thy winds rush forth,24
Proud conquerors, to pile the cloudy sky25
With darkness, and o’ershadow the dumb Earth26
With fear lest she should die.27
But lo ! Thy gentle snows descend, and keep28
Her warm and covered deep29
In a soft sleep,30
Feeding the secret sources of the year’s appointed birth.31
Yea, call Thy strong North wind and bid it blow,32
And it shall bless us so.33
And Thine the wild West wind, that from the seas34
Blows the wild rain, and moist abundant showers35
Whose fruitful hours 36
Bring the warm Earth’s increase,37
And noons of lovely joy and eves of peace ;38
When the green fields, refreshed, smile up to heaven,39
And all the unclouded night to the bright Moon is given40
Call forth Thy Western winds and let them blow,41
That they may bless us so.42
And Thine the soft breath of the South, that glides43
On tranquil-flowing tides ;44
And moves among the murmur of light leaves,45
And golden tops of bending harvest-sheaves ;46
And through the garden goes47
To rifle the rich bosom of the rose48
Of all its sweets, and wafts away the prize49
And then of so much sweetness faints and dies !50
And lives again, when sunset thrills and glows51
With mingling hues that only sunset knows ;52
And laps in cool delight53
The star-enchanted Night ;54
And breathes itself away in whispered sighs,55
And so of its own sweetness faints at last—and dies,56
O ! softly let Thy South wind breathe and blow,57
Still to delight us so,58
Thus shall the Earth rejoice,59
Hearing her Maker’s voice60
In storm and tempest, or sweet airs that blow :61
While all Thy winds obey62
Thy bidding, night and day,63
Blessing us so.64