Sunday Morning Peace
Guests Of The Heart
Soft falls through the gathering twilight
The rain from the dripping eaves,
And stirs with a tremulous rustle
The dead and dying leaves;
While afar, in the midst of the shadows,
I hear the sweet voices of bells,
Come borne on the wind of the Autumn
That fitfully rises and swells.
They call and they answer each other,
They answer and mingle again,
As the deep and the shrill in an anthem
Make harmony still in their strain,
As the voices of the sentinels mingle
In mountainous regions of snow,
Till from hill top to hill top a chorus
Floats down to the valley below.
The shadows, the firelight of even,
The sound of the rain's distant chime,
Come bringing, with rain softly dropping,
Sweet thoughts of a shadowy time;
The slumberous sense of seclusion,
The storm and intruders aloof,
We feel when we hear in the midnight
The patter of rain on the roof.
When the spirit goes forth in its yearnings
To take all its wanderers home;
Or, afar in the regions of fancy,
Delights on swift pinions to roam,
I quietly sit by the firelight
The firelight so bright and so warm
For I know that those only who love me
Will seek me through shadow and storm.
But should they be absent this evening,
Should even the household depart,
Deserted, I should not be lonely,
There still would be guests in my heart.
The faces of friends that I cherish,
The smile, and the glance, and the tone,
Will haunt me wherever I wander,
And thus I am never alone.
With those who have left far behind them
The joys and the sorrows of time
Who sing the sweet songs of the angels
In a purer and holier clime!
Then darkly, O evening of Autumn
Your rain and your shadows may fall
My loved and my lost ones you bring me
My heart holds a feast with them all.