This song is the only one on the album that Wonder did not write by himself. His co-writer was Yvonne Lowrene Wright, who co-wrote songs with Wonder for other albums. Wright's sister, Syreeta Wright, was Wonder's first wife.
The song has been considered a "retro composition" comparing the piano to that of Beethoven and Chopin. The song also noted to have a "funeral march" like tone to it. There is clear alliusion to the 1850 German chorale tune "O mein Jesu," the setting of Thomas Kelly's 1805 Protestant hymn "Stricken, smitten, and afflicted." Critics noted that the song takes a more dramatic tone than most of Wonder's other compositions. The fact that the song specifically says "They won't go when I go" was said to imply the friends Wonder is talking about may get to heaven eventually, just not before he does. Many consider this song to be a dark consequence of Stevie's 1973 car accident. The harmonic progression is very similar to Chopin's Etude Opus 10 number 4, measures 5 and 6, although at a much slower pace.