Night Funeral in Harlem, by Langston Hughes

Night Funeral in Harlem

     Night funeral     In Harlem:
     Where did they get     Them two fine cars?
Insurance man, he did not pay—His insurance lapsed the other day—Yet they got a satin boxfor his head to lay.
     Night funeral     In Harlem:
     Who was it sent     That wreath of flowers?
Them flowers camefrom that poor boy's friends—They'll want flowers, too,When they meet their ends.
     Night funeral     in Harlem:
     Who preached that     Black boy to his grave?
Old preacher manPreached that boy away—Charged Five DollarsHis girl friend had to pay.
     Night funeral     In Harlem:
When it was all overAnd the lid shut on his headand the organ had done played and the last prayers been said and six pallbearersCarried him out for deadAnd off down Lenox AvenueThat long black hearse done sped,     The street light      At his corner     Shined just like a tear— That boy that they was mournin'Was so dear, so dearTo them folks that brought the flowers,To that girl who paid the preacher man—It was all their tears that made     That poor boy's     Funeral grand.
     Night funeral     In Harlem. - Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes