Claude McKay's Early Poetry (1911-1922): A Digital Collection

De Dog-Rose

GROWIN' by de corner-stone,
   See de pretty flow'r-tree blows,
Sendin' from de prickly branch
   A lubly bunch o' red dog-rose

An' de bunch o' crimson red,
   Boastin' on de dark blue tree,
Meks it pretty, prettier yet
   Jes' as dat dog-rose can be.

Young Miss Sal jes' come from school:
   Freddy, fresh from groun' an' grub,
Pick de dog-rose off de tree,
   Gib Miss Sal to prove his lub. 

Then I watch on as dem kiss
   Right aroun' de corner-stone,
An' my heart grow vex' fe see
   How dem foolish when alone. 

An' I listen to deir talk,
   As dey say dey will be true;
"Eber true" I hear dem pledge,
   An' dat naught can part dem two. 

De petchary laugh an' jig,
   Sittin' on a bamboo low; 
Seems him guess, jes' like mese'f
   How de whole t'ing gwin' fe go. 

Time gwon, an' de rose is not:
   I see Fred, wi' eyes all dim,
Huggin' up de corner-stone,
   For his love has jilted him; 

Left him for anedder man
   Wid a pile o' money,
Dat he carried from his land
   O' de Injin coney.  

Wonder whe' de petchary?
   De rose-tree is dead an' gone;
Sal sit in de big great-house,
   Cooin' to her baby son. 

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