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

Raymond Garfield Dandridge, "Booker T. Washington" (1917)

 Alas, the willing hands are stilled 
 In death ; their toil on earth is done. 
 From plow to pen a task they filled, 
 Well earned repose, they won. 
 Long years he struggled uphill amid strife, 
 On, on to the wave crest of fame, 
 And stood at the Zenith of useful life, 
 When the Grim Reaper's summons came. 
 The messenger found him at work in the field 
 Of progress, where long he had lead. 
 With harvest time nigh, and a bountiful yield, 
 They whispered — he is dead. 

Published in Penciled Poems, 1917

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