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

Robert Baylor West, "Prologue" (1908)

Cheer up , faint heart , a day dawns brighter ,
That makes the heavy heart beat lighter ,
A day when light dispels the gloom ,
And life will seem illumined noon .

The seems dark at times , 'tis true,
Our visions rise a changeless blne ,
We grasp , and open to behold
A disappointment huge and bold .

In vain we strive our hearts to cheer ,
But lo escapes a painful sneer
At castles built on sandy soil ,
For then seems life a fruitless toil .

Our friends behold us but afar ,
Nor do they choose a nearer view ,
Their doors which e'er have been ajar
Are locked ; they hid us now adieu .

So seemed this heartless chilly world,
When adversity makes its call,
When castles built on sand are whirled,
And at our feet are made to fall.

Published in Colored American Magazine, October 1908

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