African American Poetry (1870-1928): A Digital Anthology

J. Harvey L. Baxter, "Paint Me A God" (1927)

Paint Me A God
By J. Harvey L. Baxter

Paint me a God, as black as I am black,
     As black as night, as black as ebony,
     Whose comely hue and flowing locks shall be,
But as the down on an albino’s back.
Paint me a God, Oh, artist, do not slack,
     Paint Him divine and for eternity;
     Clothe Him with might, and love, and majesty,
Make Him the King of all this motley pack.

A God that I can muse of day and night,
     And in my dreamings see a swarthy face,
A God to keep my racial armor bright,
     On land or sea, in high or lowly place,
Endow Him not with gifts of Nordic light;
     Paint me a God, in likeness of my race.

Published in Opportunity, March 1927

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