To My Aging Friends


It is no winter night comes down
Upon our hearts, dear friends of old;
But a May evening, softly brown,
Whose wind is rather cold.

We are not, like yon sad-eyed West,
Phantoms that brood o’er Time’s dust-hoard,
We are like yon Moon—in mourning drest,
But gazing on her lord.

Come nearer to the hearth, sweet friends,
Draw nigher, closer, hand and chair;
Ours is a love that never ends,
For God is dearest there!

We will not talk about the past,
We will not ponder ancient pain;
Those are but deep foundations cast
For peaks of soaring gain!

We, waiting Dead, will warm our bones
At our poor smouldering earthly fire;
And talk of wide-eyed living ones
Who have what we desire.

O Living, ye know what is death—
We, by and by, shall know it too!
Humble, with bated, hoping breath,
We are coming fast to you!

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