When the Light Goes Out by Harry S. Chester

Tho' yer lamp o' life is burnin' with a clear and steady light,
An' it never seems ter flicker, but it's allers shinin' bright;
Tho' it sheds its rays unbroken for a thousand happy days—
Father Time is ever turnin' down the wick that feeds yer blaze.
So it clearly is yer duty ef you've got a thing to do
Ter put yer shoulder to ther wheel an' try to push her through;
Ef yer upon a wayward track you better turn about—
You've lost ther chance to do it
When the
Light
Goes
Out.
 
Speak kindly to the woman who is working fer yer praise,
Ther same way as you used ter in those happy courtin' days;
She likes appreciation just the same ez me an' you,
And it's only right and proper that yer give her what is due.
Don't wait until her lamp o' life is burnin' dim an' low,
Afore you tell her what you orter told her long ago—
Now's ther time ter cheer her up an' put her blues to rout—
You've lost ther chance to do it
When the
Light
Goes
Out.
 
Don't keep a-puttin' matters off an' settin' dates ahead—
To-morrow's sun'll find a hundred thousand of us dead;
Don't think because yer feelin well you won't be sick no more—
Sometimes the reddest pippin has a worm-hole to the core.
Don't let a killin' habit grow upon you soft and still
Because you think thet you ken throw it from you at your will—
Now's ther time ter quit it when yer feelin' brave an' stout—
You've lost ther chance to do it
When the
Light
Goes
Out.
 
I'd rather die with nothin' then ter hev ther people say
That I had got my money in a robbin', graspin' way;
No words above my restin' place from any tongue or pen
Would hev a deeper meanin' than "He helped his fellow-men."
So ef you hev a fortune and you want to help the poor,
Don't keep a-stavin' off until yon get a little more;
Ef yer upon a miser's track you better turn about—
Yer record keeps on burnin'
When the
Light
Goes
Out.