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The Light Come Down


Just a dusty country boy

Praying in the trees,

Knocked out flat and speechless,

Again up on his knees

       And the light come down,

       Lord, the light come down.

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Sharper than suns he sweated in,

It slapped that April mud,

It withered the one that threatened him

And stunned him where he stood.

       Yes, the light come down,

       Lord, it did come down.

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       And he was just fourteen,

       Mixed up, and read your book

       And took you at your word

       And asked—and Lord,

       You let the light come down,

       O Lord, a comin down.

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Old Adam had a farmer’s son

And Abraham did too—

All made of mud but you made em good

And brought em home to you,

       For the light come down,

       It always did come down.

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So Lord look down on country boys

That stink and puzzle and pray,

And strike the light to blind their sight

And make their night your day.

       O let the light come down,

       Yes, bring the light on down.

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And bless you, Lord, for country boys,

Each hungry mother’s son

Treading the furrow his father plowed

Just like your single son

       When you and him come down,

       When you the light come down.


Bruce Jorgensen is an associate professor of English. This poem was originally published in Sunstone (vol. 4, no. 3 [May–June 1979], p. 16).