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;
'Til 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, protuding 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 sorta awkward, and countenance grotesque;
The sinmplicity and shrewdness in his Ethiopian face;
Showed the wisdom and ignorance of a crushed, undying race.
And he said, ""Now don't be weeping for this pretty bit of clay;
For the little boy who lived there has done gone and run away;
He was doing very finely, and he appreciates your love;
But his shore 'nuff the Heavenly Father wanted him in the big house up above.
The Lord didn't give you that baby, by no hundred thousand miles;
He just thinks thought you needed sunshine, and He lent it for awhile;
And He let you keep and love it 'til 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, creeping 'long on sorrows life'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 coming 'long.
So, my poor detached mourners, let your hearts with Jesus rest;
And don't go to criticizin' the One what
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.""
Recorded by Hank Williams, Sr.