Alas my Lord, How should I wrestle all the livelong night With Thee my God, my Strength and my Delight? How can it need So agonized an effort and a strain To make Thy Face of Mercy shine again? How can it need Such wringing out of breathless prayer to move Thee to Thy wonted Love, when Thou art Love? Yet Abraham So hung about Thine Arm outstretched and bared, That for ten righteous Sodom had been spared. Yet Jacob did So hold Thee by the clenched hand of prayer That he prevailed, and Thou didst bless him there. Elias prayed, And sealed the founts of Heaven; he prayed again And lo, Thy Blessing fell in showers of rain. Gulped by the fish, As by the pit, lost Jonah made his moan; And Thou forgavest, waiting to atone. All Nineveh Fasting and girt in sackcloth raised a cry, Which moved Thee ere the day of grace went by. Thy Church prayed on And on for blessed Peter in his strait, Till opened of its own accord the gate. Yea, Thou my God Hast prayed all night, and in the garden prayed Even while, like melting wax, Thy strength was made. Alas for him Who faints, despite Thy Pattern, King of Saints: Alas, alas, for me, the one that faints. Lord, give us strength To hold Thee fast, until we hear Thy Voice Which Thine own know, who hearing It rejoice. Lord, give us strength To hold Thee fast until we see Thy Face, Full Fountain of all Rapture and all Grace. But when our strength Shall be made weakness, and our bodies clay, Hold Thou us fast, and give us sleep till day.
- by Christina Georgina Rossetti (1830 - 1894) [author's text not yet checked against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Simon Sargon (b. 1938), "Wrestling", 1982 [ low voice and piano ], from Bitter for Sweet, no. 2 [sung text checked 1 time]
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
This text was added to the website: 2021-02-09
Line count: 42
Word count: 283