The night lamp is faintly gleaming
Within my chamber still,
And the heavy shades of midnight
Each gloomy angle fill,
And my worn and weary watchers
Scarce dare to move or weep,
For they think that I am buried
In deep and quiet sleep.
But, hush! what are those voices
Heard on the midnight air,
Of strange celestial sweetness,
Breathing of love and prayer?
Nearer they grow and clearer,
I hear now what they say -
To the Kingdom of God's glory,
They're calling me away!
See my gentle mother softly
To me approaches now,
What is the change she readeth
Upon my pale damp brow?
She clasps her hands in anguish
Whose depth no words might say?
Has she, too, heard the voices
That are calling me away?
The father fond of my children,
First sole love of my youth,
The loving, the gentle hearted,
And full of manly truth,
Is kneeling now beside me,
Beseeching me to stay -
Oh! 'tis agony to tell him
They're calling me away.
If earthly love could conquer
The mighty power of Death,
His love would stay the current
Of failing strength and breath!
That voice whose tender fondness
So long has been my stay
Should tempt me from the voices
That are calling me away.
Ah! they bring my children to me,
That loved and lovely band,
And with wistful awe-struck faces,
Around my couch they stand,
And I strain each gentle darling
To me with wailing cry,
As I for the first time murmur:
"My God! 'tis hard to die!"
But, O hark! Those strains of Heaven,
Sound louder in mine ear,
Whisp'ring: "Thy God, Thy Father,
Will guard those children dear."
Louder they grow, now drowning
All sounds of mortal birth,
And in wild triumphant sweetness
Bear me aloft from earth!