Sweet evening hour!  sweet evening hour!
That calms the air, and shuts the flower;

Sweet evening hour!  sweet evening hour!
That calms the air, and shuts the flower;
That brings the wild bird to her nest,
The infant to its mother's brast.

Sweet hour!  that bids the labourer cease;
That gives the weary team release,
And leads them home, and crowns them there
With rest and shelter, food and care.

O season of soft sounds and hues,
Of twilight walks among the dews,
Of feelings calm, and converse sweet,
And thoughts too shadowy to repeat!

The weeping eye, that loathes the day,
Finds peace beneath thy soothing sway;
And faith and prayer o'ermastering grief,
Burst forth, and bring the heart relief.

Yes, lovely hour!  thou art the time
When feelings flow, and wishes climb;
When timid souls begin to dare,
And God receives and answers prayer.

Then trembling through the dewy skies
Look out the stars, like thoughtful eyes
Of angels, calm reclining there,
And gazing on this world of care.

Then, as the earth recedes from sight,
Heaven seems to ope her fields of light,
And call the fettered soul above,
From sin and grief, to peace and love.

Sweet hour! for heavenly musing made –
When Isaac walked, and Daniel prayed;
When Abram's offering God did own;
And Jesus loved to be alone.

Who has not felt that Evening's hour
Draws forth devotion's tenderest power;
That guardian spirits round us stand,
And God himself seems most at hand?

The very birds cry shame on men,
And chide their selfish silence, then:
The flowers on high their incense send:
And earth and heaven unite and blend.

Let others hail the rising day:
I praise it when it fades away;
When life assumes a higher tone,
And God and heaven are all my own.

~ Henry Francis Lyte

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