Might as well bury her
   And bury her deep, 
Might as well put her 
   Where she can sleep. 

Might as well lay her 
   Out in her shiny black; 
And for the love of God 
   Not wish her back. 

Maum Sal may miss her 
   Maum Sal, she only 
With no one now to scoff 
   Sal may be lonely . . . . 

Nobody else there is 
   Who will be caring 
How rocky was the road 
   For her wayfaring; 

Nobody be heeding in 
   Cabin, or town
That she is lying here 
    In her best gown. 

Boy that she suckled 
   How should he know 
Hiding in city holes 
   Sniffling the ‘snow’?

And how should the news 
   Pierce Harlem’s din 
To reach her baby gal, 
   Sodden with gin? 

To cut her withered heart
    They cannot come again, 
Preach her the lies about 
    Jordan and then 

Might as well drop her 
   Deep in the ground
Might as well pray for her 
   That she sleep sound. . . . .

From Caroling Dusk (Harper & Brothers, 1927), edited by Countee Cullen. This poem is in the public domain.