African American Poetry (1870-1926): A Digital Anthology

Langston Hughes, "To the Black Beloved" (1925)

Ah,
My black one,
Thou art not beautiful
Yet thou hast
A loveliness
Surpassing beauty.

Oh,
My black one,
Thou art not good
Yet thou hast
A purity
Surpassing goodness.

Ah,
My black one,
Thou art not luminous
Yet an altar of jewels,
An altar of shimmering jewels,
Would pale in the light
Of thy darkness,
Pale in the light
Of thy nightness.

Published in The Crisis, December 1925
Also published in The Weary Blues, 1926

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