The Journey West

We walked far,
And the ice was thick on the river.
The lights of Nauvoo seemed dim and blurred.
We were cold, and we cried a little.
“We’ll go so far,”
Said Brother Brigham, “they’ll never hurt us again.”
The wagons faced the mighty West,
With its miles and miles of mountains and plain.
We walked barefoot,
And the world was green and cool as a meadow.
We waded the brooks and gathered flowers
And snatched at joy like a shadow.
One day we stopped
To bury Melissa with silent prayer.
The wagon wheels rolled over her grave
So wild wolves would not find her there.
The trail grew steep.
We walked around boulders and down a ravine.
The air was clear and clean and high
And our campfires smelled of piñon pine.
We walked far,
And there was our valley—a lonely place.
We had found our home—a desert to conquer
With courage, with love, and with God’s grace.

[illustration] Illustrated by Dick Brown