I have gone backward in the work,
by Anne Brontë
The labour has not sped,
Drowsy and dark my spirit lies,
Heavy and dull as lead.
How can I rouse my sinking soul
From such a lethargy?
How can I break these iron chains,
And set my spirit free?
There have been times when I have mourned,
In anguish o'er the past;
And raised my suppliant hands on high,
While tears fell thick and fast,
And prayed to have my sins forgiven
With such a fervent zeal,
An earnest grief --- a strong desire
That now I cannot feel!
And vowed to trample on my sins,
And called on Heaven to aid
My spirit in her firm resolves
And hear the vows I made.
And I have felt so full of love,
So strong in spirit then,
As if my heart would never cool
Or wander back again.
And yet, alas! how many times
My feet have gone astray,
How oft have I forgot my God,
How greatly fallen away!
My sins increase, my love grows cold,
And Hope within me dies,
And Faith itself is wavering now,
O how shall I arise!
I cannot weep but I can pray,
Then let me not despair;
Lord Jesus, save me lest I die,
And hear a wretch's prayer.