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Old Wooden Church in the Grove

by John B. Ketchum

A song for the old wooden church in the grove,
And that hour of hallowed repose,
When the Spirit comes down within the old walls,
In the hush of the Sabbath-day's close;
When the sun sinks low in the far distant west
And the shadows of night are falling,
As the calm of the even steals over all,
And the bell is lovingly calling.

In fancy I sit in the pew by the wall,
And my spirit is pensive and grieves;—
And I hear the low prayers that trembled and rose
As the summer-wind sang thro' the eaves:—
I hear the same voices that chanted in tune
In the days of the long, long ago,
Yet singing those hymns as the eve closes in,
And the music comes sweetly and low.

Though absent and distant an exile I roam,
I will think of those hours and the time,
And memory keep green the little, old church,
And preserve it in story and rhyme:—
Let them bury me where the tones of the bell,
There my spirit forever will move,
Where the voice of the worshiper riseth in praise,
From the old wooden church in the grove.

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