Poetry, VOLUME 12

African-American Nature Poetry [Great Outdoors Month]

In honor of Great Outdoors Month (June), we offer these poems by African-American Nature Poets.

These poems all can be found in:

Black Nature:
Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry

Camille Dungy, Editor.
U of GA Press, 2009.

[ Our Favorite Great Outdoors Books! ]


Alice Dunbar-Nelson

I had not thought of violets of late
The wild shy kind that spring beneath your feet
In wistful April days when lovers mate
And wander through the fields in raptures sweet
The thoughts of violets meant florists shops
And bows and pins and perfumed papers fine
And garish lights and mincing little fops
And cabarets and songs and deadening wine
So far from sweet real things my thoughts had strayed
I had forgot wide fields and clear brown streams
The perfect loveliness that God has made
Wild violets shy and Heaven mounting dreams
And now unwittingly you’ve made me dream
Of violets and my soul’s forgotten gleam

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