Claude McKay

(15 September 1889 – 22 May 1948 / Clarendon)

The Harlem Dancer - Poem by Claude McKay

Applauding youths laughed with young prostitutes
And watched her perfect, half-clothed body sway;
Her voice was like the sound of blended flutes
Blown by black players upon a picnic day.
She sang and danced on gracefully and calm,
The light gauze hanging loose about her form;
To me she seemed a proudly-swaying palm
Grown lovelier for passing through a storm.
Upon her swarthy neck black shiny curls
Luxuriant fell; and tossing coins in praise,
The wine-flushed, bold-eyed boys, and even the girls,
Devoured her shape with eager, passionate gaze;
But looking at her falsely-smiling face,
I knew her self was not in that strange place.


Comments about The Harlem Dancer by Claude McKay

  • Susan Williams (2/5/2016 2:51:00 PM)


    Sometimes blinding ourselves to what we do to survive is the only way to keep going another day (Report) Reply

    14 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (5/12/2013 4:12:00 AM)


    Poop

    poop is such a relief to do
    getting rid of all the crap in you

    food in your mouth
    shit out your south
    the cycle relentessly continue

    whether many or a few
    turds in you
    eject easily or slowly drag thru

    daily it's the same
    as your bowels proclaim
    'once again the shit is due! '

    this poem isn't profound
    about that lovely brown mound
    some in fact will think it crap
    and i humbly agree
    with all that's bottled up
    inside me
    (Report) Reply

  • Sylva Portoian (11/4/2011 3:44:00 PM)


    Wikipedia Says...It is one of his best poems...
    And I feel the same
    He felt with his race
    With his girl friends
    Why they sell them selves...
    He was real poet...Honest
    Never a play boy
    (Report) Reply

Read all 3 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: light, dance, girl, smile



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  9. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
  10. Television
    Roald Dahl
[Report Error]