This post was first published in February of 2015. I couldn’t think of a better way to open the celebartion of Black history than with what my parents and grandparents referred to as the Negro National Anthem. And let us not forget that Black History is American History.
Till earth and heaven ring
Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;
let our rejoicing rise,
high as the list’ning skies, let it resound loud as the rolling sea
sing a song full of faith that the dark past has tought us,
sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;
facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
let us march on till victory is won.
bitter the chast’ning rod,
felt in the day that hope unborn had died;
yet with a steady beat,
have not our weary feet,
come to the place on witch our fathers sighed?
we have come over a way that with tears has been watered,
we have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered,
out from the gloomy past, till now we stand at last
where the white gleam of our star is cast.
God of our silent tears,
thou who has brought us thus far on the way;
thou who has by thy might,
led us into the light,
keep us forever in the path, we pray
lest our feet stray frm the places, our God, where we met thee,
least our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget thee,
shadowed beneath the hand,
may we forever stand,
tru to our God,
Tru to our native land.
Songwriters: Rosamond J. Johnson / James Weldon Johnson
Lift Every Voice and Sing lyrics © Edward B Marks Music Company, Marks Edward B. Music Corp., GLORYSOUND, A DIV. OF SHAWNEE PRESS, INC.