Christ My Song - 1119
Alas for the city, deserted and lonely - A Lament
(Hannah K. Burlingham/Johannes Thomas Rüegg)
1. Alas for the city, deserted and lonely,
the city that once was the joy of the earth;
she mourns as a widow, nor desolate only;
the nations deny her imperial birth:
she weeps in the night, and the tears of her anguish
are glistening still on her woe-begone cheeks;
the once ardent zeal of her lovers doth languish:
not one, in her sorrow, to comfort her speaks.
2. Oh, who shall bemoan thee, sad daughter of Zion?
Or who of thy peace shall in pity enquire?
Thine enemies rage as the ravening lion,
thy lovers no longer thy beauty desire.
Oh, vain are the words that thy prophets have spoken,
false causes of banishment still they declare;
the Lord hath the staff of his covenant broken,
the Lord can alone the wide breaches repair.
3. The Lord hath afflicted thee, lone one: sad-hearted
thy sons to the stranger as captives are sold;
thy beauty, O Zion, is wholly departed,
for gone is the glory that crowned thee of old.
His heritage ne'er had Jehovah forsaken,
ne'er left his beloved in her enemies' hand,
But Israel the way of the heathen hath taken,
and blotted with blood his once blossoming land.
4. Alas! when Messiah, the Saviour appointed,
in meekness and lowliness stooped to thy need,
thy hatred was spent on Jehovah's Anointed,
but love, strong as death, is still mighty to plead.
Oh, say, dost thou e'er in thy exile remember
the Lord who alone thy salvation can be?
His mercies abide, his compassions are tender,
he wept, O Jerusalem, wept over thee.
5. Ah, tremble! yet hope! for his tears are recorded;
ah, weep! yet rejoice! for his blood hath been shed;
Yes, pardon and peace shall be freely accorded
to her, who hath curses and wrath on her head.
Thine eyes shall behold him, the conquering Lion!
Thine eyes shall behold him, the Lamb that was slain!
Thy hand that once pierced him, O daughter of Zion,
shall crown him with joy at his coming again!
Hannah K. Burlingham, Wayside Songs, 1901, 41-42.