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Jean Toomer

Outside, the sun arises from its cradle in the tree-tops of the forest. Shadows of pines are dreams the sun shakes from its eyes. The sun arises. Gold-glowing child, it steps into the sky and sends a birth-song slanting down gray dust streets and sleepy windows of the southern town. – Jean Toomer, from “Kabnis,”… Continue reading Jean Toomer

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Claude McKay

Go spill your beauty on the laughing faces Of happy flowers that bloom a thousand hues, Waiting on tiptoe in the wilding spaces, To drink your wine mixed with sweet drafts of dews. — Claude McKay, from “A Song of the Moon.” Complete Poems. (University of Illinois Press; annotated edition edition June 18, 2008)

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Langston Hughes

Hold fast to dreams, For if dreams die Life is a broken-winged bird, That cannot fly. —  Langston Hughes, from “Dreams,” The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes. (Vintage; 1st Vintage classics ed edition, October 31, 1995) Originally published November 15th 1994.

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Nikki Giovanni

we used to talk all night and do things alone together and i’ve begun (as a reaction to a feeling) to balance the pleasure of loneliness against the pain of loving you  — Nikki Giovanni, from “Balances,” Love Poems. (William Morrow; 1 edition February 14, 1997)

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Aberjhani

With its leaves so rich and heavy with elation and its crimson face made brighter with visions of divinity the shadow of a certain rose looks just like an angel eating light. ― Aberjhani, Visions of a Skylark Dressed in Black. (Black Skylark Singing and Lulu; 1st edition July 24, 2012)

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American Literature · Anthology · Classic · Collection · Excerpt · Fragment · Harlem Renaissance · Jamaican-American Culture · Jamaican-American Literature · Passage · Poetry

Claude McKay

Your lips betray the secret of your soul, The dark delicious essence that is you, A mystery of life, the flaming goal I seek through mazy pathways strange and new. — Claude McKay, from “A Red Flower,” Complete Poems. (University of Illinois Press January 23, 2004)

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