Poem by William Blake, music by Sir Hubert Parry. As ‘bdouvill’ remarked on YouTube, “I find it funny that words by a Swedenborgian mystic set to music by an atheist became the quintessential Anglican hymn.” It’s a testament to the universal power of good music, or something, I suppose. I love how the second line of each stanza throws you for a little loop, metrically, but then brings you right back.
Jerusalem is well-known enough that recordings and videos of it are everywhere. I really like bdouvill’s recording — it’s the best I’ve been able to find that doesn’t involve an orchestra or an organ.
If that’s not to your taste, you can listen to thousands of impassioned Britons singing it with that peculiar joy people only get when they’re invited to sing along and find that everyone knows the words.
And did those feet in ancient time.
Walk upon England’s mountains green,
And was the holy lamb of God
On England’s pleasant pastures seen?
And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark satanic mills?
Bring me my bow of burning gold,
Bring me my arrows of desire,
Bring me my spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!
I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant land!
…yep, “call to social action” just about sums it up.