Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Lift Every Voice and Sing


Lift every voice and sing,
'Til earth and heaven ring,
Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;
Let our rejoicing rise
High as the listening skies,
Let it resound loud as the rolling sea.
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught 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 'til victory is won.

Stony the road we trod,
Bitter the chast'ning rod,
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died;
Yet with a steady beat,
Have not our weary feet
Come to the place for which 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,
'Til now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast.

God of our weary years,
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 from the places, our God, where we met Thee,
Lest, our hearts drunk with the wine of the world, we forget Thee;
Shadowed beneath Thy hand,
May we forever stand,
True to our God,
True to our native land.

9 comments:

Suzan said...

So many people do not know the anthem you quoted. It is one of my faborite hymns. A dear friend of mine referred to it as "The Black National Anthem". The words are poignant and true. Thank you so much for posting today!

suz said...

I thought of you today as I watched Obama sworn in. Watching the crowds yesterday and the Obama team doing service work yesterday left me with a great sense of pride. Today I was teary...my heart and prayers go out to this young man and his family - he has so much work to do...Hopefully he will continue to instill confidence and hope in the people of this country and will be able to get Congress to act like the intelligent, responsible people they claim to be. In the end, as a first and second generation American, I feel very proud.

anne bebbington said...

We watched this at 4pm to 6pm UK time - I made the kids sit with me a watch history being made. I just loved the way his usually cool composure slipped as he took the oath. I so hope he can deliver all he wants to. Awesome!

Luckybear said...

Thank you for printing out the words to this lovely hymn. I had read that the words "Lift Every Voice and Sing" had been taken from a song referred to as the The Black National Anthem. However (especially today) it speaks to everyone.

What an amazing day. I too was teary eyed watching it from work.

I am a fellow quilter who enjoys stopping by to read your blog now and then and that of your friend Guenveur in Kent.

-Kari

Gretchen said...

Thanks for the beautiful post. Amen sister! I am so proud of our country today and watched this historic moment with tears in my eyes. This is truly a day filled with hope.

Gretchen said...

Thanks for the beautiful post. Amen sister! I am so proud of our country today and watched this historic moment with tears in my eyes. This is truly a day filled with hope.

SallyB said...

Glory, glory HALLELUJAH! What a glorious day this has been for America and for the entire world!

I'm SO glad I asked off work today so that I could witness history being made. I can't tell you how proud I am of our country tonight. Sure, tomorrow the real work of leading our country back from the abyss begins, but let us tonight celebrate one of US history's greatest days, when we inaugurated our first black President, our first real global President, and someone who is being lauded the world over as America's new promise of hope and change.

That hymn that you quoted is one of my personal favorites. We've sung it in church before on occasions commemorating black history, and is perhaps the most appropriate song to sing on this historic day. I almost wish that it had been sung at the Inauguration ceremony, but that aside, it's a powerful song that speaks of a long struggle for equality and justice, one that we have, on this day, perhaps moved one step closer toward.

May God bless President Obama, his family and his entire administration. May they lead us forward with wisdom, compassion and humility.

debijeanm said...

I'm still dancing in the streets (figuratively, of course.)

Thank you, Nancy, for your work in bringing this happy day to our country!

PS (PSanafter-thought) said...

We sing this in church some times. Our pianist is also the school music teacher. She was so proud of her students who recognized this song when they were watching the TV coverage. The school could hardly be whiter, but the song is here. [Catching up on blogs!]