It must be so, poor, fading, mortal thing!
And now we part, thou pallid form of clay;
Thy hold is broke—I can unfurl my wing;
And from the dust the spirit must away!
As thou at night, hast thrown thy vesture by,
Tired with the day, to seek thy wonted rest,
Fatigued with time's vain round,'t is thus that I
Of thee, frail covering, myself divest.
Thou know'st, while journeying in this thorny road,
How oft we're sighed and struggled to be twain;
How I have longed to drop my earthly load,
And thou, to rest thee from thy toil and pain.
Then he, who severs our mysterious tie,
Is a kind angel, granting each release;
He'll seal thy quivering lip and sunken eye
And stamp thy brow with everlasting peace.
When thou hast lost the beauty that I gave,
And life's gay scenes no more will give thee place,
Thou may'st retire within the secret grave,
Where none shall look upon thine altered face.
But I am summoned to the eternal throne,
To meet the presence of the King most high;
I go to stand, unshrouded and alone,
Full in the light of God's all-searching eye.
There must the deeds, which we together wrought,
Be all remembered—each a witness made;
The outward action and the secret thought
Before the silent soul must there be weighed.
Lo! I behold the seraph throng descend
To waft me up where love and mercy dwell!
Away, vain fears! the Judge will be my friend;
It is my Father calls—pale clay, farewell!