Inscription under the Picture of an Aged Negro-woman
Art thou a woman? -- so am I; and all
That woman can be, I have been, or am;
A daughter, sister, consort, mother, widow.
Whiche'er of these thou art, O be the friend
Of one who is what thou canst never be!
Look on thyself, thy kindred, home, and country,
Then fall upon thy knees, and cry "Thank GOD,
An English woman cannot be a SLAVE!"
Art thou a man? -- Oh! I have known, have loved,
And lost, all that to woman man can be;
A father, brother, husband, son, who shared
My bliss in freedom, and my woe in bondage.
-- A childless widow now, a friendless slave,
What shall I ask of thee, since I have nought
To lose but life's sad burden; nought to gain
But heaven's repose? -- these are beyond thy power;
Me thou canst neither wrong nor help; -- what then?
Go to the bosom of thy family,
Gather thy little children round thy knees,
Gaze on their innocence; their clear, full eyes,
All fix'd on thine; and in their mother, mark
The loveliest look that woman's face can wear,
Her look of love, beholding them and thee:
Then, at the altar of your household joys,
Vow one by one, vow altogether, vow
With heart and voice, eternal enmity
Against oppression by your brethern's hands:
Till man nor woman under Britain's laws,
Nor son nor daughter born within her empire,
Shall buy, or sell, or hold, or be, a slave.
James Montgomery's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Inscription under the Picture of an Aged Negro-woman by James Montgomery )
The Road Not Taken
If You Forget Me
Still I Rise
Edgar Allan Poe
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
William Ernest Henley
- It's Funny, Isn't It?, Lili Domis
- You And I, Lili Domis
- Sonnet: Who Makes Money Wisely?, Dr John Celes
- Postcard For The Tin Soldier In Tintypes.., mary douglas
- I Submit, I Am Krakatoa
- till the last blood, binod bastola
- When Public Limited Company Goes Under, Terence G. Craddock
- We are three friends, gajanan mishra
- Single march, hasmukh amathalal
- It is unpleasant to live with mental uns.., Dr.V.K. Kanniappan