African American Poetry (1870-1928): A Digital Anthology

George Reginald Margetson, "Colonel Charles Young (Funeral Song)" (1928)

He cometh, our hero, in silence that wraps him,
   Honored, in exile he suffered and died.
The loved Stars and Stripes now in memory o'ercaps him,
   Which long he had served with the patriot's pride.

We bless him, the man of unselfish devotion,
   A martyr to hatred and vicious intrigue
Unfolding base schemes to def eat his promotion
   For those with the force of oppression in league.

We laud him, the layman of soul and of vision,
   Of moral persuasion and courage innate.
Who conquered himself by a noble decision
   And showed us the way to be mighty and great.

We mourn him, the Bronze Knight, in solemnized splendor,
   Who braved the fierce storms of a warrior's life;
A gallant West-Pointer--no idle pretender.
   He stood the stern mettle-test, trained for the strife.

We cover our Colonel with flags and with flowers
   And lay him to rest where his comrades are lain;
His sculptured memorial in Arlington towers,
   A "Soldier of Fortune," by Fate's arrow slain.

We bury our idol with love's veneration,
   On his valiant dust let the myrtle e'er bloom.
He's earned the respect of a Race and a Nation,
   Who voice his rare virtues and weep o'er his tomb. 

Published in Saturday Evening Quill, June 1928

This page has tags: