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The Negro Singer

O'er all my song the image of a face
  Lieth, like shadow on the wild sweet flowers.
  The dream, the ecstasy that prompts my powers;
  The golden lyre's delights bring little grace
To bless the singer of a lowly race.
  Long hath this mocked me: aye in marvelous hours,
  When Hera's gardens gleamed, or Cynthia's bowers,
  Or Hope's red pylons, in their far, hushed place!
But I shall dig me deeper to the gold;
  Fetch water, dripping, over desert miles,
  From clear Nyanzas and mysterious Niles
Of love; and sing, nor one kind act withhold.
  So shall men know me, and remember long,
  Nor my dark face dishonor any song.

Written by James D. Corrothers (1869-1917)


Mr. Africa Poetry Lounge