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

T. Thomas Fortune, "Lincoln" (1902)


The waves dashed high; the thunders echoed far;
The lightnings flashed into the dismal gloom
The bolts by Vulcan forged in Nature's womb,
And earth was shaken by the furious war!
The Ship of State was strained in every spar!
And strong men felt that now had come their doom;
And weak men scanned the dark heavens for a star
To save them from a fratricidal tomb.
But, one, amid the strife—collected, calm,
Patient and resolute—was firm, and trod
The deck, defiant of the angry storm,
Guiding the ship—like to some ancient god!
   And high upon the scroll of endless fame,
   In diamond letters, flashes Lincoln's name.

Published in Colored American Magazine, January-February 1902
Also published in Dreams of Life, 1905
Also published in Colored American Magazine, February 1907

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