Hymn LII [Book I]

The Conduct of Most Sailors

Original Text: 
Henry Alline, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs (Boston: Peter Edes, 1786): 40-41. Early American Imprints, Series 1, no. 44842. Online.
1While sailors blest with wind and tide,
2Do safely o'er the ocean ride,
3    Chearful they spend their hours in mirth:
4But when the raging tempests blow,
5And yawning graves invade below,
6    They tremble on the verge of death.
7Then to their knees the wretches fly
8To seek a friend; they mourn and cry,
9    Confess their sins, and help implore;
10And while distress'd to heav'n they vow
11If God will help, and save them now
12    They'll tread their sinful ways no more.
13But when he stills the foaming main,
14And calms the furious winds again,
15    Soon they forget the vows they made;
16"Come on, they say, ye merry souls,
17We'll drown our grief with jolly bowls;
18    Good luck has all our fears allay'd."
19O poor returns for grave so great
20To wretches on the brink of fate!
21    Good Lord forgive th' unhappy crew:
22O may they now by grace reform,
23Before the great and dreadful storm
24    Prove their eternal overthrow.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire / Sharine Leung
RPO Edition: