God's Trombones: Seven Negro Sermons in Verse

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The inspirational sermons of the old Negro preachers are set down as poetry in this collection -- a classic for more than forty years, frequently dramatized, recorded, and anthologized. Mr. Johnson tells in his preface of hearing these same themes treated by famous preachers in his youth; some of the sermons are still current, and like the spirituals they have taken a significant place in black folk art. In transmuting their essence into original and moving poetry, the author has also ensured the survival of a ...
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Overview

The inspirational sermons of the old Negro preachers are set down as poetry in this collection -- a classic for more than forty years, frequently dramatized, recorded, and anthologized. Mr. Johnson tells in his preface of hearing these same themes treated by famous preachers in his youth; some of the sermons are still current, and like the spirituals they have taken a significant place in black folk art. In transmuting their essence into original and moving poetry, the author has also ensured the survival of a great oral tradition.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140422177
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/1/1969
  • Series: Penguin Poets Series
  • Pages: 56
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 5.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


JAMES WELDON JOHNSON (1871–1938) was a songwriter, poet, novelist, journalist, critic, autobiographer, lawyer, and public servant. With his brother John Rosamond, he wrote “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” which became the African American national anthem. He was United States consul to Venezuela and Nicaragua, executive director of the NAACP, and a professor of creative literature at Fisk University. His many books include The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man.
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Table of Contents

Preface 1
Listen, Lord--A Prayer 13
The Creation 17
The Prodigal Son 21
Go Down Death--A Funeral Sermon 27
Noah Built the Ark 31
The Crucifixion 39
Let My People Go 45
The Judgment Day 53
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    "Listen! -- Listen!/ All you sons of Pharaoh"

    Here are the concluding words of "Let My People Go," from James Weldon Johnson's 1927 collection, GOD'S TROMBONES - SEVEN NEGRO SERMONS IN VERSE: "Listen! -- Listen!/ All you sons of Pharaoh"/ Who do you think can hold God's people/ When the Lord God himself has said,/ Let my people go?" ***** Preceding "Let My People Go" is a black and white drawing by Harlem artist Aaron Douglas. It shows a black Moses praying while God overwhelms Pharaoh's pursuing army in the waves of the Red Sea. ***** When West African griots, tribal story tellers, were captured, shipped to North America, enslaved and became Christian converts through the words of King James's Bible, they reinvented themselves as the first Negro preachers and creators of the black Protestant "Song Sermon." Author James Weldon Johnson strove to recreate the spoken aspects of sermons he had heard in his youth by great American black preachers. Very well done, too, this little book. Very prayerful. -OOO-

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    Posted January 31, 2009

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