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"A Poem for Children with Thoughts on Death" was published in A Winter Piece (Hudson & Goodwin, 1782)

A Poem for Children with Thoughts on Death

                           I
O Ye young and thoughtless youth, 
     Come seek the living God,
The scriptures are a sacred truth,
     Ye must believe the word.
				                Eccle. xii. 1.

                             II
Tis God alone can make you wisfe, 
     His wisdom's from above,
He fills the soul with sweet supplies
     By his redeeming love.
				                Prov. iv. 7.

                        III
Remember youth the time is short,
     Improve the present day
And pray that God may guide your thoughts,
     and teach your lips to pray. 
				                Psalm xxx. 9.

                        IV
To pray unto the most high God,
     and beg restraining grace,
Then by the power of his word
     You'l see the Saviour's face.

                        V
Little children they may die,
     Turn to their native dust,
Their souls shall leap beyond the skies,
     And live among the just.

                        VI
Like little worms they turn and crawl,
     and gasp for every breath,
The blessed Jesus sends his call,
     and takes them to his rest.

                        VII
Thus the youth are born to die,
     The time is hastening on,
The Blessed Jesus rends the sky,
     and makes his power known.
				                Psalm ciii. 15.

                        VIII
Then ye shall hear the angels sing
     The trumpet give a sound,
Glory, glory to our King,
     The Saviour's coming down.
				                Matth. xxvi. 64.

                        IX
Start ye saints from dusty beds,
     and hear a Saviour call,
Twas Jesus Christ that died and bled,
     and thus preserv'd thy soul.

                        X
This the portion of the just,
     Who lov'd to serve the Lord,
Their bodies starting from the dust,
     Shall rest upon their God.

                        XI
They shall join that holy word,
     That angels constant sing,
Glory, glory to the Lord,
     Hallelujahs to our King.

                        XII
Thus the Saviour will appear,
     With guards of heavenly host,
Those blessed Saints, shall then declare,
     Tis Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
				                Rev. i. 7, 8.

                        XIII
Then shall ye hear the trumpet sound,
     The graves give up their dead,
Those blessed saints shall quick awake,
     and leave their dusty beds.
				                Matth. xxvii. 51, 52.

                        XIV
Then shall you hear the trumpet sound,
     and rend the native sky,
Those bodies starting from the ground,
     In the twinkling of an eye.
				                I Cor. xv. 51, 52, 53, 54.

                        XV
There to sing the praise of God,
     and join the angelic train,
And by the power of his word,
     Unite together again.

                        XVI
Where angels stand for to admit
     Their souls at the first word,
Cast sceptres down at Jesus feet
     Crying holy holy Lord.

                        XVII
Now glory be unto our God
     all praise be justly given,
Ye humble souls that love the Lord
     Come seek the joys of Heaven.

This poem is in the public domain.

This poem is in the public domain.

Jupiter Hammon

Born into slavery in Lloyd Harbor, New York, on October 17, 1711, Jupiter Hammon was the first African American poet to be published in the United States. His poems include “An Address to Miss Phillis Wheatley” and “A Poem for Children with Thoughts on Death.”

by this poet

poem
I
O come you pious youth! adore
   The wisdom of thy God,
In bringing thee from distant shore,
   To learn His holy word.

II
Thou mightst been left behind
   Amidst a dark abode;
God's tender mercy still combin'd
   Thou hast the holy word.

III
Fair wisdom's ways are paths of peace,
   And they that walk
poem
Salvation comes by Christ alone,
   The only Son of God;
Redemption now to every one,
   That love his holy Word.

Dear Jesus, we would fly to Thee,
   And leave off every Sin,
Thy tender Mercy well agree;
   Salvation from our King. 

Salvation comes now from the Lord,
   Our victorious King.
His holy Name be