I won’t lie, I was singing “I Know It Was the Blood” while reading this poem. We don’t sing enough spirituals and hymns in church today. Like Tamela Mann said, that “back in the day praise.” The fact that slaves could still praise and hope on the Lord despite their toils and trials should be an inspiration for us all. Especially those of us who so quickly lose faith when things get tough.
“Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life.”―Buddha
the old ladies
in the big hats
singing the songs of Zion –
not in the choir,
but from the corner
facing the pulpit –
the Amen Corner –
the pre-11:00am-service devotion –
“I know it was the blood
Yes, I know it was the blood
I know it was the blood for me –
One day when I was lost
Jesus died upon the cross
And I know it was the blood for me.”
I don’t know if they still
sing these old songs in black churches –
I lost that cultural connection –
like so many artifacts overlooked,
broken, moving from place to place.
But I remember them, fondly –
a part of my youth and upbringing.
A rolling stone gathers no moss.
It is true.