by Fenton Johnson
Turn down the lamp; my life is done.
The fitful moments drift to ease —
Rosemary for the dreams that died,
And mignonette for cherished hopes.
Turn down the lamp; my soul gains life;
I rise above the narrow pale
Of cities bought with gold and slime,
I spread my sorrow strengthened wings
Above the armies of the world,
In quest of kingdoms built in youth.
The hour of death that men call life
Is closing as a troubled dream,
The flame within my lamp is low,
I seek eternal liberty,
The freedom of the endless sky.
Good nurse, enfold my arms,
And cool the fever of my brow,
My hour has come, turn down the lamp.
Last updated September 21, 2022