Women of the Early Harlem Renaissance: African American Women Writers 1900-1922

Not Dead, But Sleeping

We say he is dead; ah, the word is too somber;
   'Tis the touch of God, on the weary eyes.

That has caused them to close, in peaceful slumber,
   To open with joy, in the upper skies.
We say he is gone; we have lost him forever;
   His face and his form we will cherish no more;
While happy and safe, just over the river,
   He is waiting for us, where partings are o'er.

Ah, sad are our hearts, as we gaze on him sleeping,
   And bitter and sad are the tears gushing down;
And yet,—but we cannot see, for the weeping,—
   He has only exchanged the cross, for the crown. 

And though the dark mists of grief may surround us,
   Obscuring the face of the Father above,
And blindly we grope, still His arms are around us,
   To guide and sustain with His pitying love.

And he whom we love, is safe in His keeping,
   Yes, safe and secure, whatever may come;
But ne'er will we know how sweetly he's sleeping.
   Till God, in His mercy, shall gather us home. 


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