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

Moon Song

The moonlight breaks upon the city's towers,
And falls amid cemented steel and stone,
Shedding its lustrous light like white-lipped flowers
Across the ruins of a storm wind-blown.

Upon the clothes behind the tenement
That hang like ghosts suspended from thin lines,
To lovely, living things indifferent,
Incongruous and strange the moonlight shines.

There is no magic from your presence here,
O moon, mad moon, tuck up your trailing robe,
Its silver seems so ancient and severe
Against the glow of one electric globe.

Go spill your beauty on the laughing faces
Of happy flowers of a thousand hues
That wait on tiptoe in the wilding spaces 
To drink your wine with heavy draught of dews.

(First published in Milwaukee Arts Monthly, October 1922)

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