The leaves around me falling
Are preaching of decay;

The leaves around me falling
Are preaching of decay;
The hollow winds are calling,
"Come, pilgrim, come away!"
The day, in night declining,
Says, I must too decline,
The year its life resigning –
Its lot foreshadows mine.

The light my path surrounding,
The loves to which I cling,
The hopes within me bounding,
The joys that round me wing –
All melt, like stars of even,
Before the morning's ray
Pass upward into heaven,
And chide at my delay.

The friends gone there before me
Are calling me from high,
And joyous angels o'er me
Tempt sweetly to the sky.
"Why wait," they say, "and wither
" 'Mid scenes of death and sin?
"O rise to glory hither,
"And find true life begin!"

I hear the invitation,
And fain would rise and come –
A sinner, to salvation;
An exile, to his home:
But while I here must linger,
Thus, thus, let all I see
Point on, with faithful finger,
To heaven, O Lord, and Thee.

~ Henry Francis Lyte

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