The Book of American Negro Poetry

Front Cover
James Weldon Johnson
Harcourt, Brace, 1922 - African Americans - 217 pages
 

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Contents

I
vii
II
3
III
17
IV
27
V
39
VI
43
VII
49
VIII
55
XVIII
127
XIX
133
XX
151
XXI
159
XXII
161
XXIII
167
XXIV
175
XXV
181

IX
59
X
69
XI
73
XII
93
XIII
101
XIV
107
XV
109
XVI
117
XVII
125
XXVI
183
XXVII
185
XXVIII
189
XXIX
191
XXX
193
XXXI
197
XXXII
201
Copyright

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Page xxviii - I, young in life, by seeming cruel fate Was snatch'd from Afric's fancy'd happy seat: What pangs excruciating must molest, What sorrows labour in my parent's breast? Steel'd was that soul and by no misery mov'd That from a father seiz'd his babe belov'd: Such, such my case. And can I then but pray Others may never feel tyrannic sway?
Page 134 - If we must die, let it not be like hogs Hunted and penned in an inglorious spot, While round us bark the mad and hungry dogs, Making their mock at our accursed lot. If we must die...
Page 78 - Then God walked around And God looked around On all that He had made. He looked at His sun, And He looked at His moon, And He looked at His little stars; He looked on His world With all its living things, And God said, "I'm lonely still.
Page 77 - The stars were clustered about His head, And the earth was under His feet. And God walked, and where He trod His footsteps hollowed the valleys out And bulged the mountains up. Then He stopped and looked and saw That the earth was hot and barren. So God stepped over to the edge of the world And He spat out the seven seas; He batted His eyes, and the lightnings flashed ; He clapped His hands, and the thunders rolled; And the waters above the earth came down, The cooling waters came down.
Page xl - What the colored poet in the United States needs to do is something like what Synge did for the Irish ; he needs to find a form that will express the racial spirit by symbols from within rather than by symbols from without, such as the mere mutilation of English spelling and pronunciation.
Page 51 - Lord! Behold this maimed and broken thing, dear God; it was an humble black man, who toiled and sweat to save a bit from the pittance paid him. They told him: Work and Rise! He worked. Did this man sin? Nay, but someone told how someone said another did — one whom he had never seen nor known.
Page viii - There is, for the good reason that he possesses the innate powers. He has the emotional endowment, the originality and artistic conception, and, what is more important, the power of creating that which has universal appeal and influence. I make here what may appear to be a more startling statement by saying that the Negro has already proved the possession of these powers by being the creator of the only things artistic that have yet sprung from American soil...
Page 78 - Up from the bed of the river God scooped the clay; And by the bank of the river He kneeled Him down; And there the great God Almighty, Who lit the sun and fixed it in the sky, Who flung the stars to the most far corner of the night, Who rounded the earth in the middle of His hand...
Page 3 - A NEGRO LOVE SONG SEEN my lady home las' night, Jump back, honey, jump back. Hel' huh han' an' sque'z it tight, Jump back, honey, jump back. Hyeahd huh sigh a little sigh, Seen a light gleam f'om huh eye, An' a smile go flittin' by — Jump back, honey, jump back.
Page 77 - Then God himself stepped down — And the sun was on his right hand, And the moon was on his left; The stars were clustered about his head, And the earth was under his feet. And God walked, and where he trod His footsteps hollowed the valleys out And bulged the mountains up. Then he stopped and saw That the earth was hot and barren.

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