How Can I Keep From Singing

(Traditional Shaker Hymn)

My life goes on in endless song
Above Earth's lamentations.
I hear the real. though far off hymn
That hails a new creation
     Through all the tumult and the strife
     I hear its music ringing
     It sounds an echo in my soul,
     How can I keep from singing?

While though the tempest loudly roars,
I hear the truth, it liveth.
And though the darkness -round me close,
Songs in the night, it giveth.
     No storm can shake my inmost calm.
     While to that rock I'm clinging.
     Since love is lord of heaven and earth,
     How can I keep from singing?

When tyrants tremble in their tear
And hear their death knell ringing,
When friends rejoice both far and near,
How can I keep from singing?
     In prison cell and dungeon vile,
     Our thoughts to them are winging.
     When friends by shame are undefiled.
     How can I keep from singing?

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