Green fingers :) Loving plants, trees, flowers, leaves… “Greenness” by Angelina Weld Grimké #BlackHistoryMonth #ValentinesDay

Greenness by Angelina Weld Grimké

Tell me is there anything lovelier,
Anything more quieting
Than the green of little blades of grass
And the green of little leaves?

Is not each leaf a cool green hand,
Is not each blade of grass a mothering green finger,
Hushing the heart that beats and beats and beats?

.

“Caroling Dusk: an Anthology of Verse by Black Poets.” Edited by Countee Cullen.

NEW and USED: Abebooks.com Caroling Dusk
NEW at independent bookstores NEAR you: Caroling Dusk

For the love of food- Nikki Giovanni. #ValentinesDay #BlackLivesMatter

Knoxville Tennessee by Nikki Giovanni

I always like summer
Best
you can eat fresh corn
From daddy’s garden
And okra
And greens
And cabbage
And lots of
Barbeque
And buttermilk
And homemade ice-cream
At the church picnic

And listen to
Gospel music
Outside
At the church
Homecoming
And go to the mountains with
Your grandmother
And go barefooted
And be warm
All the time
Not only when you go to bed
And sleep

From: My Black Me: A Beginning Book of Black Poetry (A Puffin Poetry Book)
NEW and USED: Abebooks.com My Black Me: A Beginning Book of Black Poetry 
NEW at independent bookstores NEAR you: My Black Me.

“Brown eyes that loved without a trace of fear” and grandmothers! #BlackHistoryMonth #ValentinesDay #BlackLivesMatter

We begin with grandmothers. Isn’t it something else when you think we came out of of our grandmothers- in a very physical way… Her body gave either our father or our mother. You are physically a part of her body. Of course not everybody has a loving relationship with their grandparents or even *has* grandparents they know. Some people become our grandparents because of the air you breathe together or the houses you shared or the streets.

Part of a poem Face by Jean Toomer, it is a sad poem but he wrote it with so much love for the grandmother… loving her face:

Face

Hair—
silver-gray
like streams of stars,
Brows—
recurved canoes
quivered by the ripples blown by pain,
Her eyes—
mist of tears
condensing on the flesh below
.

From: November Cotton Flower

Brown eyes that loved without a trace of fear,
Beauty so sudden for that time of year.

.

All of the poem November Cotton Flower:

Boll-weevil’s coming, and the winter’s cold,
Made cotton-stalks look rusty, seasons old,
And cotton, scarce as any southern snow,
Was vanishing; the branch, so pinched and slow,
Failed in its function as the autumn rake;
Drouth fighting soil had caused the soil to take
All water from the streams; dead birds were found
In wells a hundred feet below the ground—
Such was the season when the flower bloomed.
Old folks were startled, and it soon assumed
Significance. Superstition saw
Something it had never seen before:
Brown eyes that loved without a trace of fear,
Beauty so sudden for that time of year.
.

.

“Caroling Dusk: an Anthology of Verse by Black Poets.” Edited by Countee Cullen.

NEW and USED: Abebooks.com Caroling Dusk
NEW at independent bookstores NEAR you: Caroling Dusk

I love you for your brownness. #BlackHistoryMonth #ValentinesDay #BlackLivesMatter #BlackHerStory

To a Dark Girl by Gwendolyn Bennet

I love you for your brownness
And the rounded darkness of your breast.
I love you for the breaking sadness in your voice
And shadows where your wayward eye-lids rest.

Something of old forgotten queens
Lurks in the lithe abandon of your walk
And something of the shackled slave
Sobs in the rhythm of your talk.

Oh, little brown girl, born for sorrow’s mate,
Keep all you have of queenliness,
Forgetting that you once were slave,
And let your full lips laugh at Fate!

.

“Caroling Dusk: an Anthology of Verse by Black Poets.” Edited by Countee Cullen.
NEW and USED: Abebooks.com Caroling Dusk
NEW at independent bookstores NEAR you: Caroling Dusk