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

The Skeptic. Written on an Incident, Read in a Periodical

The mother's face looked tired and worn,
   While speaking of her son;
The good man listened earnestly.
   As she went sadly on,

Telling of days of weariness.
   And nights of earnest prayer.
All, all for him, whose soul had been
   Her heart's most anxious care.

"You'll speak to him?" at last, she said,
   "Perhaps, your clearer sight
Will find a way, I have not seen,
   To lead him to the Light."

"God helping me." the list'ner said,
   And went to seek her son.
He found the young man hard and cold,
   With heart, that bowed to none.

'He knew not if there were a God;'
   He said, with careless pride--
"What know I, positive, of Christ,
   Or that He lived and died?"

He doubted all the prophecies,
   And ev'ry Bible truth;
He had no faith in God nor man,
   This proud, rebellious youth.

The good man paused,—he knew of naught,
   That this man's heart would move;
At last, he asked, if he had faith,
   In his good mother's love.

The dark look left those doubting eyes;
   "That love, so deep and pure,
How could I doubt?" he quickly said,
   "Of that, I'm always sure."

"You say, you will not pray to God,
   Because I cannot prove;
Then, will you breathe one earnest prayer,
   This night, my boy, to love?"

The young man promised; in 'is heart.
   He sadly craved for light;
His promise filled his mind again,
   When all alone that night;

And, kneeling down, within his room,
   He whispered low: "Oh, Love!"
There came unto his waiting heart,
   The answer: "God is Love."

And then, his heart cried low: "Oh God!"
   The answer came again: --
"Because of God's all-pitying love.
   The blessed Savior came."

Then,—then went up the yearning cry:—
   "Oh, Christ, Thou Love Divine,
Shed Thou the light of Thy great Truth,
   O'er this dark heart of mine!"

His heart stood still, in ecstasy;
   The blessed Light had come;
He rose, with joy, unspeakable,
   And sought his mother's room.

This page has paths:

This page has tags: