Melvin Beaunorus Tolson

Melvin Beaunorus Tolson Poems

1.
The Birth of John Henry

The night John Henry is born an ax
of lightning splits the sky,
and a hammer of thunder pounds the earth,
and the eagles and panthers cry!
...

2.
A Song for Myself

3.
Abraham Lincoln of Rock Spring Farm

I

Along the Wilderness Road, through Cumberland Gap,
The black ox hours limped toward Sunday's sun,
Across a buff clay belt with scrawls of stone,
...

4.
An Ex-Judge at the Bar

Bartender, make it straight and make it two—
One for the you in me and the me in you.
Now let us put our heads together: one
Is half enough for malice, sense, or fun.
...

5.
DELTA

Doubt not
the artist and his age
(though bald as the pilled head of garlic),
married or divorced
...

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Melvin Beaunorus Tolson Biography

Melvin Beaunorus Tolson (February 6, 1898 – August 29, 1966) was an American Modernist poet, educator, columnist, and politician. His work concentrated on the experience of African Americans and includes several long historical poems. His work was influenced by his study of the Harlem Renaissance, although he spent nearly all of his career in Texas ...

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