Sunday, 10 February 2019

The Infinite! - Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock

How soars this labouring spirit, while it thinks,
O boundless Lord, of Thee!
How low midst earth and littleness it sinks
When it descends to me;
To self, and sorrow's night, and brief mortality!

Yet dost thou call me hence, Saviour, from woe and death!
To endless life, thy boon, my earnest soul aspires!
But who can praise Thee? What created breath?
What grateful ardours? What seraphic fires?

Wave, trees of life, in harp-like harmonies;
Life's crystal river, glide in soft accord;
But not heaven's mingled anthem can suffice
To adore Thee Infinite, our God the Lord!

Thunder his praise, ye worlds of light;
Ye radiant orbs, his glories tell;
Shoat, countless spheres that gild the night;
O trump of God, the chorus swell!

But not th' adoring tones of bliss that stream
From heaven's ethereal height.
Can half attain their awful glorious theme,
Our God — the Infinite!

Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock (1724 - 1803) Germany
Translated by John Sheppard
Source: The Foreign Sacred Lyre: Metrical Versions of Religious Poetry from the German, French, and Italian, by John Sheppard, Jackson & Walford, 1857

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