The Death Of The Old Year


FULL knee-deep lies the winter snow,

And the winter winds are wearily sighing:

Toll ye the church bell sad and slow,

And tread softly and speak low,

For the Old Year lies a-dying.

Old Year, you must not die;

You came to us so readily,

You lived with us so steadily;

Old Year, you shall not die.


He lieth still; he doth not move;

He will not see the dawn of day;

He hath no other life above.

He gave me a friend and a true, true love,

And the New Year will take 'em away.

Old Year, you must not go;

So long you have been with us,

Such joy you have seen with us;

Old Year, you shall not go.


How hard he breathes! Over the snow

I heard just now the crowing cock.

The shadows flicker to and fro;

The cricket chirps; the light burns low;

'Tis nearly twelve o'clock.

Shake hands before you die.

Old Year, we'll dearly rue for you;

What is it we can do for you?

Speak out before you die.


His face is growing sharp and thin;

Alack! Our friend is gone.

Close up his eyes; tie up his chin;

Step from the corpse, and let him in

That standeth there alone,

And waiteth at the door.

There's a new foot on the floor, my friend,

And a new face at the door, my friend,

A new face at the door.