This night thy soul shall be required of thee.@Luke 12:20

Sanford M. Brown, in Songland Melodies, edited by Horace N. Lincoln (Dallas, Texas: Songland Company, 1898) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Two young men, who had been brought up together in a distant state, came to Kansas City to get a start in the world. They were employed in laboring on the piers of one of the great railroad bridges on the Missouri River. An accident occurred in which several men were injured; among them was one of these young men, who was fatally crushed. He was taken into one of the tents in which the laborers were living, and being conscious, he was told by the physician that he could live only a few hours. He requested his companion to pray with him, and stated that he was not prepared to die. His friend assured him that he did not pray for himself and was not fit to pray for a dying man. Then he asked that a song might be sung, but was again assured by his friend that he knew no song appropriate to an occasion like that. Finally he begged that a Bible might be brought and a few verses read to him before he died. The tents and cabins were searched, and there was not a copy of the word of God to be found, and so, among his last words the dying man exclaimed: And is it possible that away from home and without a prayer, a song, or a verse of Scripture, I am to be ushered into the presence of God unprepared?

Companion, draw nigh, they say I must die;
Early the summons has come from on high;
The way is so dark, and yet I must go!
Oh! that such sorrow you never may know!

Refrain

Only a prayer, only a tear,
O if sister and mother were here;
Only a song, ’twill comfort and cheer,
Only a word from that Book so dear.

Ah! can you not bow and pray with me now?
Sad the regret, we have never learned how
To come before Him, who only can save,
Leading in triumph thro’ death and the grave.

Refrain

And can you not sing a song of His love,
How He came down from the mansions above,
To bleed and to die on Calvary’s tree,
Bringing salvation to sinners like me?

Refrain

Alas! it is so, but thus it must be;
No word of comfort or promise for me;
To die without God or hope in His Son,
Covered in darkness, bereaved and undone.

Refrain

O people of God, who have His blest Word,
Will you not heed the command of your Lord?
And publish to all of Adam’s lost race
Pardon, forgiveness, salvation thro’ grace?

Refrain