Scripture Verse

…so great a cloud of witnesses. Hebrews 12:1


Words: John W. Chad­wick, A Book of Po­ems (Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts: Ro­berts Bro­thers, 1876), pag­es 208–09. Chad­wick wrote these words for the 25th an­ni­ver­sa­ry of his church in Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts.

Music: Auld Lang Syne, tra­di­tion­al Scot­tish tune (🔊 pdf nwc).

John W. Chadwick


It singeth low in every heart,
We hear it each and all—
A song of those who answer not,
However we may call;
They throng the silence of the breast;
We see them as of yore—
The kind, the true, the brave, the sweet,
Who walk with us no more.

’Tis hard to take the burden up,
When these have laid it down;
They brightened all the joy of life,
They softened every frown.
But, Oh, ’tis good to think of them
When we are troubled sore!
Thanks be to God that such have been,
Though they are here no more!

More home-like seems the vast unknown,
Since they have entered there;
To follow them were not so hard,
Wherever they may fare.
They cannot be where God is not,
On any sea or shore;
Whate’er betides, Thy love abides,
Our God, forevermore.