A Poem by William Lisle Bowles

Oh! still, as with a seraph’s voice, prolong
The harmonies of that enchanting song,
Till, listening, we might almost think we hear,
Beyond this cloudy world, in the pure sphere
Of light, acclaiming hosts the throne surrounding,
The long hosannahs evermore resounding,
Soft voices interposed in pure accord,
Breathing a holier charm. Oh! every word
Falls like a drop of silver, as the strain,
In winding sweetness, swells and sinks again.
Sing ever thus, beguiling life’s long way,
As here, poor pilgrims of the earth, we stray;
And, lady, when thy pilgrimage shall end,
And late the shades of the long night descend,
May sister seraphs welcome with a song,
And gently say, Why have you stayed so long?