I know not what my heart has lost;
I cannot strike the chords of old;
The breath that charmed my morning life
Hath chilled each leaf within the wold.
The swallows twitter in the sky,
But bare the nest beneath the eaves;
The fledglings of my care are gone,
And left me but the rustling leaves.
And yet, I know my life hath strength,
And firmer hope and sweeter prayer;
For leaves that murmur on the ground
Have now for me a double care.
I see in them the hope of spring,
That erst did plan the autumn day;
I see in them each gift of man
Grow strong in years, then turn to clay.
Not all is lost—the fruit remains
That ripened through the summer’s ray;
The nurslings of the nest are gone,
Yet hear we still their warbling lay.
The glory of the summer sky
May change to tints of autumn hue;
But faith that sheds its amber light
Will lend our heaven a tender blue.
O altar of eternal youth!
O faith that beckons from afar,
Give to our lives a blossomed fruit—
Give to our moms an evening star!