1 As long as life its term extends,
hope’s blest dominion never ends;
for while the lamp holds on to burn,
the greatest sinner may return.
2 Life is the season God hath giv’n
to fly from hell, and rise to heav’n;
that day of grace fleets fast away,
and none its rapid course can stay.
3 The living know that they must die;
but all the dead forgotten lie:
their mem’ry and their name is gone,
alike unknowing and unknown.
4 Their hatred and their love is lost,
their envy bury'd in the dust;
they have no share in all that’s done
beneath the circuit of the sun.
5 Then what thy thoughts design to do,
still let thy bands with might pursue;
since no device nor work is found.
Nor wisdom underneath the ground.
6 In the cold grave, to which we haste,
there are no acts of pardon past:
but fix'd the doom of all remains,
and everlasting silence reigns.