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

Langston Hughes, "The Laments of a Vanquished Beau" (1921)

WILLY is a silly boy,
Willy is a cad.
Willy is a foolish kid,
Sense he never had.
Yet all the girls like Willy—
Why I cannot see,—
He even took my best girl
Right away from me.
I asked him did he want to fight,
But all he did was grin
And answer, "Don't be guilty
Of such a brutal sin."
Oh, Willy's sure a silly boy,
He really is a cad,
Because he took the only girl
That I 'most ever had.
Her hair's so long and pretty
And her eyes are very gay;
I guess that she likes Willy
'Cause he's handsome, too, they say.
But for me, he's not good looking;
And he sure has made me mad,
'Cause he went and took the only girl
That I 'most ever had.

Published in The Brownies' Book, August 1921

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