WHEN the short, 

bright summer of Lapland is ended, 

and the sun is about to set, 

to rise no more for seven or eight months,

 the people of the hamlets 

and villages ascend the neighboring hills 

to see the last of the Day ..., 

and chant a requiem, 

or farewell psalm, for the parting day.

Come, little daughters, hasten, 

Ye should be bravely dight! 

Make ready, boys! For we go forth 

To bid the sun good-night.

"Four months with steady shining

He's made the whole earth fair, 

And myriad blossoms greeted him, 

And bird-songs filled the air.

"But now October waneth;

His setting draweth near; 

We shall not see his face again 

For more than half a year."

So forth they go, together,

Parents and children, all, 

The aged, and the little ones,

Young men, and maidens tall.

The sun hangs low in heaven;

He throws his slanting rays 

Across their loving faces, turned

To meet his parting gaze.

And now he's gone! The darkness

Is settling like a pall; 

A long, low dirge of sad farewell

Breaks from the lips of all;

In mournful cadence chanting

The requiem of the sun, 

The dear, bright day departed now,

The long, long night begun.

St. Nicholas.