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

Langston Hughes, "Young Sailor" (1926)

He carries
His own strength
And his own laughter,
His own today
And his own hereafter,--
This strong young sailor
Of the wide seas.

What is money for?
To spend, he says.
And wine?
To drink.
And women?
To love.
And today?
For joy.
And tomorrow?
For joy.
And the green sea
For strength,
And the brown land
For laughter.
And nothing hereafter.

Published in The Weary Blues, 1926

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