Note: The corrections are numerous
Recorded by Hank Williams, Sr.
Writer: Unknown (Not Fred Rose or Hank Williams)
I was walking in Savannah past a church decayed and dim,
When slowly through the window came a plaintive funeral hymn.
And my sympathy awakened and a wonder quickly grew,
’Till I found myself envired in a little colored pew.
Out front a colored couple sat in sorrow nearly wild.
On the altar was a casket, and in the casket was a child.
I could picture him while livin', curly hair protruding lips,
I'd seen perhaps a thousand in my hurried southern trips.
Rose a sad, old colored preacher from his little wooden desk
With a manner sort of awkward and countenance grotesque.
The simplicity and shrewdness in his Ethiopian face
Showed the wisdom and ignorance of a crushed, undying race.
And he said, “Now don't be weepin’ for this pretty bit of clay,
For the little boy who lived there has done gone and run away.
He was doin' very finely and he ‘ppreciates your love,
But his sho-'nough father wanted him in that big house up above.
The Lord didn't give you that baby, by no hundred thousand miles,
He just think you need some sunshine and He lent it for awhile.
And he let you keep and love it ‘till your hearts were bigger grown,
And these silver tears you're sheddin' now is just interest on the loan.
Just think, my poor dear mourners creepin' along on sorrow’s way,
What a blessed picnic this here baby got today.
Your good fathers and good mothers crowd the little fellow round,
In the angel's tender garden of the big plantation ground.
And his eyes they brightly sparkle at the pretty things he viewed
But a tear came, and he whispered “I want my parents too”.
But then the angel's chief musicians teach that little boy a song,
Says if only they be faithful, they'll soon be comin' ‘long.
So my poor detached mourners, let your hearts with Jesus rest,
And don't go to criticizin' the One what knows the best.
He has give us many comforts, He's got the right to take away
To the Lord be praised in glory, forever let us pray.”