Ella Wheeler Wilcox

(5 November 1850 - 30 October 1919 / Johnstown Center / Rock County / Wisconsin)

Now I lay Me


When I pass from earth away,
Palsied though I be and gray,
May my spirit keep so young
That my failing, faltering tongue
Frames that prayer so dear to me
Taught me at my mother's knee:

'Now I lay me down to sleep,'

(Passing to Eternal rest
On the loving parent breast)

'I pray the Lord my soul to keep;'

(From all danger safe and calm
In the hollow of His palm

'If I should die before I wake,'

(Drifting with a bated breath
Out of slumber into death,)

'I pray the Lord my soul to take.'

(From the body's claim set free
Sheltered in the Great to be.)
Simple prayer of trust and truth
Taught me in my early youth-
Let my soul its beauty keep
When I lay me down to sleep.

Submitted: Friday, April 02, 2010

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