"To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." -- Phil.1:21.
"Merkt ihr's, Freunde! Mein Auge wird muede."
transl., Jane Borthwick, 1858
Hear me, my friends! the hour has come,
Soon I must leave you, and hasten home;
Then, ere our Father shall call me to rest,
Hear my last wishes, my last request.
When my last moments on earth draw near,
When my own voice you no longer hear,
Then gather round me, and sing the song
We have sung together and loved so long.
Sing of His love, who has died to save,
Him who has entered and spoiled the grave;
Sing with glad accents and grateful heart,
Sing till my spirit in peace depart.
Fold my cold hands on my quiet breast,
Close my tired eyelids in gentle rest,
One farewell kiss of affection take --
Leave me to slumber till Christ shall awake.
To our last dwelling-place bear me along
With sweetest music of chimes and song;
There let the evergreen branches wave,
And bright flowers blossom around my grave.
Though a long darkness has veiled my eyes,
Still let them look to the eastern skies;
There, where the Morning Star rose bright,
Jesus, the Sun of our darkest night.
Carve but these words on the simple stone,
"Living and dying, of Jesus alone
Ever he spoke to the Church beneath;
Sweet to him, therefore, was life and death."
When ye revisit the peaceful spot,
Come with soft tears and with tender thought;
Look up to heaven in hope and prayer --
Jesus again will unite us there!