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

My Mountain Home

De mango tree in yellow bloom,
   De pretty akee seed,
De mammee where de John-to-whits come
   To have their daily feed, 

Show you de place where I was born,
   Of which I am so proud,
'Mongst de banana-field an' corn
   On a lone mountain-road. 

One Sunday marnin' 'fo' de hour
   Fe service-time come on,
Ma say dat I be'n born to her
   Her little las'y son. 

Those early days be'n neber dull,
   My heart was ebergreen;
How I did lub my little wul'
   Surrounded by pingwin!

An' growin' up, with sweet freedom
   About de yard I'd run;
An' tired out I'd hide me from
   De fierce heat of de sun. 

So glad I was de fus' day when
   Ma sent me to de spring;
I was so happy feelin' then
   Dat I could do somet'ing. 

De early days pass quickly 'long,
   Soon I became a man,
An' one day found myself among
   Strange folks in a strange Ian'. 

My little joys, my wholesome min',
   Dey bullied out o' me,
And made me daily mourn an' pine
   An' wish dat I was free. 

Dey taught me to distrust my life,
   Dey taught me what was grief;
For months I travailed in de strife,
   'Fa' I could find relief. 

But I'll return again, my Will,
   An' where my wild ferns grow
An' weep for me on Dawkin's Hill,
   Dere, Willie, I shall go. 

An' dere is somet'ing near forgot,
   Although I lub it best;
It is de loved, de hallowed spot
   Where my dear mother rest. 

Look good an' find it, Willie dear,
   See dat from bush 'tis free; 
Remember that my heart is near,
   An' you say you lub me. 

An' plant on it my fav'rite fern,
   Which I be'n usual wear;
In days to come I shall return
   To end my wand'rin's dere.

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