English poetry

Poems in English


I will not reason, wrestle here with you, Though you pursue and worry me about; As well put forth my […]


To clasp you now and feel your head close-pressed, Scented and warm against my beating breast; To whisper soft and […]


For the dim regions whence my fathers came My spirit, bondaged by the body, longs. Words felt, but never heard, […]

To One Coming North

At first you’ll joy to see the playful snow, Like white moths trembling on the tropic air, Or waters of […]

Homing Swallows

Swift swallows sailing from the Spanish main, O rain-birds racing merrily away From hill-tops parched with heat and sultry plain […]

On the Road

Roar of the rushing train fearfully rocking, Impatient people jammed in line for food, The rasping noise of cars together […]

The Wild Goat

O you would clothe me in silken frocks And house me from the cold, And bind with bright bands my […]

Russian Cathedral

Bow down my soul in worship very low And in the holy silences be lost. Bow down before the marble […]

North and South

O sweet are tropic lands for waking dreams! There time and life move lazily along. There by the banks of […]


Now the dead past seems vividly alive, And in this shining moment I can trace, Down through the vista of […]

Birds of Prey

Their shadow dims the sunshine of our day, As they go lumbering across the sky, Squawking in joy of feeling […]

The Lynching

His Spirit in smoke ascended to high heaven. His father, by the cruelest way of pain, Had bidden him to […]

Morning Joy

At night the wide and level stretch of wold, Which at high noon had basked in quiet gold, Far as […]


The sun sought thy dim bed and brought forth light, The sciences were sucklings at thy breast; When all the […]

Wild May

Aleta mentions in her tender letters, Among a chain of quaint and touching things, That you are feeble, weighted down […]

I Shall Return

I shall return again; I shall return To laugh and love and watch with wonder-eyes At golden noon the forest […]

In Bondage

I would be wandering in distant fields Where man, and bird, and beast, lives leisurely, And the old earth is […]

O Word I Love to Sing

O word I love to sing! thou art too tender For all the passions agitating me; For all my bitterness […]

To a Poet

There is a lovely noise about your name, Above the shoutings of the city clear, More than a moment’s merriment, […]

The Castaways

The vivid grass with visible delight Springing triumphant from the pregnant earth, The butterflies, and sparrows in brief flight Chirping […]

Through Agony

I All night, through the eternity of night, Pain was my potion though I could not feel. Deep in my […]


O lonely heart so timid of approach, Like the shy tropic flower that shuts its lips To the faint touch […]

Harlem Shadows

I hear the halting footsteps of a lass In Negro Harlem when the night lets fall Its veil. I see […]

Rest in Peace

No more for you the city’s thorny ways, The ugly corners of the Negro belt; The miseries and pains of […]

Exhortation: Summer 1919

Through the pregnant universe rumbles life’s terrific thunder, And Earth’s bowels quake with terror; strange and terrible storms break, Lightning-torches […]


Although she feeds me bread of bitterness, And sinks into my throat her tiger’s tooth, Stealing my breath of life, […]


Into the furnace let me go alone; Stay you without in terror of the heat. I will go naked in […]

The Harlem Dancer

Applauding youths laughed with young prostitutes And watched her perfect, half-clothed body sway; Her voice was like the sound of […]

To Winter

Stay, season of calm love and soulful snows! There is a subtle sweetness in the sun, The ripples on the […]


Oh, I have tried to laugh the pain away, Let new flames brush my love-springs like a feather. But the […]

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