Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (18071882). Complete Poetical Works. 1893.
Voices of the Night
The Reaper and the Flowers
In his diary, under date of December 6, 1838, Mr. Longfellow writes: A beautiful holy morning within me. I was softly excited, I knew not why, and wrote with peace in my heart, and not without tears in my eyes, The Reaper and the Flowers, a Psalm of Death. I have had an idea of this kind in my mind for a long time, without finding any expression for it in words. This morning it seemed to crystallize at once, without any effort of my own. This psalm was printed in the Knickerbocker for January, 1839, with the sub-title A Psalm of Death, and with the familiar stanza from Henry Vaughan, beginning: