A First Series of Hymns and Songs/Sacred Songs/Life a Flower of the Field

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6. Life a Flower of the Field.

The sun had risen, the air was sweet,
And brightly shone the morning dew,
And cheerful sounds and busy feet
Pass'd the lone meadows through;
While rolling like a flowery sea,
In waves of gay and spiry bloom,
The hay-fields rippled merrily,
In beauty and perfume.

I saw the early mowers pass
At morn along that pleasant dell,
And rank on rank the shining grass
Around them quickly fell.
I look'd, and far and wide at noon
The morning's fallen flowers were spread;
And all, as rose the evening moon,
Beneath the scythe were dead.

All flesh is grass, the Scriptures say,
And so through life's brief span we find;
Cut down as in a summer day
Are all of human kind.
Some, while the morning still is fair,
Will fall in youth's sweet op'ning prime;
The heat of mid-day some will bear,
But all lie low in time.

O mournful thought! ah, how to me
It breathes a solemn warning tale!
I soon a broken stem shall be,
Like those that strew the vale.
At early dawn or closing light
The silent hand of death may fall:
Oh, may I learn this lesson right,
So full of truth for all!