On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit.@Revelation 22:2

Josiah K. Alwood, circa 1880 (🔊 pdf nwc). Alwood wrote about the origin of this song in A Rainbow at Midnight and a Song with Morning; it appeared in the Christian Conservator, February 26, 1896:

It was a balmy night in August 1879, when returning from a debate in Spring Hill, Ohio, to my home in Morenci, Michigan, about 1 o’clock a.m. I saw a beautiful rainbow north by northwest against a dense black nimbus cloud. The sky was all perfect clear except this dark cloud which covered about forty degrees of the horizon and extended about halfway to the zenith. The phenomenon was entirely new to me and very lovely. I had traveled ten miles from the scene of mental toil, Morpheus was playing his sweetest lullaby. Another mile of travel, a few moments of time, a fellow of my size was ensconced in sweet home and wrapped in sweet sleep. A first class know-nothing till rosy-sweet morning was wide over the fields.

To awake and look abroad and remember the night was to be filled with sweet melody. A while at the organ brought forth a piece of music now known as The Unclouded Day. A day and a half was bestowed on the melody and four stanzas.

In 1987, Willie Nelson sang this song in a Farm Aid concert broadcast all over America.

portrait
Josiah K. Alwood (1828-1909)

O they tell me of a home far beyond the skies,
O they tell me of a home far away;
O they tell me of a home where no storm clouds rise,
O they tell me of an unclouded day.

Refrain

O the land of cloudless day,
O the land of an unclouded day,
O they tell me of a home where no storm clouds rise,
O they tell me of an unclouded day.

O they tell me of a home where my friends have gone,
O they tell me of that land far away,
Where the tree of life in eternal bloom
Sheds its fragrance through the unclouded day.

Refrain

O they tell me of a king in His beauty there,
And they tell me that mine eyes shall behold
Where He sits on the throne that is whiter than snow,
In the city that is made of gold.

Refrain

O they tell me that He smiles on His children there,
And His smile drives their sorrows all away;
And they tell me that no tears ever come again
In that lovely land of unclouded day.

Refrain