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

James H. Young, "A Portrait" (1928)

are like a melody
that comes floating to me ,
over the quiet of a summer day
when all is calm and
noon-day zephyrs trill along
warmed by the glowing sun,
a ball of gilded fire,
. . . a song.

are like a garden in the spring
when the buds ache as they
painfully-—joyfully—burst the
bonds that held them fast during winter,
for their arrival is a beautiful thing
and so is the awakening of life
... to a maid.

are spring—
the springtime of life, for
your eyes glow as life's piteous—
joyous—aching—ecstatic secrets
are unfurled to you;
you live again the same joy,
the same life, that the trees live
and die with them—as they do.

Published in Carolina Magazine, May 1928

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