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

Josephine Heard "Welcome to Hon. Frederick Douglass" (1888)


Mt. Zion Church, March 5th. 1888. 

OUR hearts are filled with pride to-day — 
We hail thee, Noble Sire, 
Stern prejudice is swept away 
By Freedom's cleansing fire. 

And o'er this Southland you may roam, 
With ne'er a cause to fear — - 
We bid thee Welcome to our home, 
Welcome, and right good cheer! 

From rugged Blue Ridge mountain peak, 
To ocean's white crest wave : 
Even infant lips thy praises speak, 
And boast thy deeds so brave. 

The bondsman's fetters long since broke 
And tossed aside by thee, 
Thou hurledst off the cursed yoke, 
And panted to be free. 

We see thee in thy cradle-bed, 
Thy mother's pride and joy; 
When from oppression's hand you fled, 
When but a strippling boy. 

Thou, Moses of the negro race, 
This day we hail with pride; 
The day that brings us face to face, 
And Douglass by our side. 

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