Scripture Verse

The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? Isaiah 40:6


Henry Twells

Words: Hen­ry Twells, in Hymns, Son­nets, and Oth­er Po­ems for the Bi­cen­ten­a­ry of the S.P.G., 1900.

Music: Splen­dor Ber­tram Lu­ard-Sel­by, in Hymns An­cient and Mo­dern, 1904 (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a bet­ter pho­to of Twells,

Bertram Luard-Selby


The voice says, Cry! What shall we cry?
All flesh is grass, and like the flow­er
Its glo­ries droop, its plea­sures die,
Its joys but last one fleet­ing hour.

The voice says, Cry! O pi­te­ous cry!
And are there none to help and save?
Have all that live be­neath the sky
No other pros­pect but a grave?

The voice says, Cry! Yet glo­ri­ous cry!
The Word of God can nev­er fall,
And tells how Je­sus, throned on high,
Holds out eter­nal life to all.

The voice says, Cry! Who needs the cry?
O bro­ther men! who needs it not?
By count­less mill­ions, far and nigh,
’Tis still un­heard, des­pised, for­got.

The voice says, Cry! What stops the cry?
Our greed of wealth, our love of ease,
Our lack of ear­nest will to try
Mankind to save, and God to please.

The voice says, Cry! O let us cry!
Though stand­ing on death’s aw­ful brink,
Men feast, they jest, they sell, they buy,
And can­not see, and will not think.

The voice says, Cry! Lord, we would cry
But of Thy good­ness teach us how;
For fast the hours of mer­cy fly,
And, if we cry, it must be now!