How still is the river, and calm is its tide!
We scarcely discover its waters to glide;
O list you, how noiseless, though mighty it be;
O hark you, how voiceless it hastes to the sea.
How swift is the river, and bright is the gleam!
Its rays how they quiver through woods o’er the stream;
As onward ’tis sweeping so restless and free,
All racing and leaping its course to the sea.
O, beautiful river, thou seemest to say,
Thus, thus is it ever that life hastes away:
Though noisy or noiseless its waters may be,
Yet, still without pausing, they flow to the sea.
O, where are they taking, dear children, your soul,
Eternity truly for man is the goal,
But, O, will you find it of pleasure or pain,
A long everlasting of loss or of gain?