Laugh, ye profane, and swell and burst,
With bold impiety:
Yet shall ye live for ever cursed,
And seek in vain to die.
The gasp of your expiring breath
Consigns your souls to chains,
By the last agonies of death
Sent down to fiercer pains.
Ye stand upon a dreadful steep,
And all beneath is hell;
Your weighty guilt will sink you deep
Where the old serpent fell.
When iron slumbers bind your flesh,
With strange surprise you’ll find
Immortal vigor spring afresh,
And tortures wake the mind!
Then you’ll confess the frightful names
Of plagues you scorned before,
No more shall look like idle dreams,
Like foolish tales no more.
Then shall ye curse that fatal day,
With flames upon your tongue,
When you exchanged your souls away
For vanity and songs.
Behold, the saints rejoice to die,
For Heav’n shines round their heads;
And angel guards prepared to fly,
Attend their fainting beds.
Their longing spirits part, and rise
To their celestial seat;
Above these ruinable skies
They make their last retreat.
Hence, ye profane, I hate your ways,
I walk with pious souls;
There’s a wide difference in our race,
And distant are our goals.