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Selected Poems

Overview

The classic volume by the distinguished modern poet and winner of the 1950 Pulitzer Prize that represents her technical mastery, her compassionate and illuminating response to a world that is both special and universal, and her warm humanity.

Author Biography: Gwendolyn Brooks was born in 1917. Her books include A Street in Bronzeville, Annie Allen, The Bean Eaters, Maud Martha, and In the Mecca.

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Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase ... benefits world literacy! Read more Show Less

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Overview

The classic volume by the distinguished modern poet and winner of the 1950 Pulitzer Prize that represents her technical mastery, her compassionate and illuminating response to a world that is both special and universal, and her warm humanity.

Author Biography: Gwendolyn Brooks was born in 1917. Her books include A Street in Bronzeville, Annie Allen, The Bean Eaters, Maud Martha, and In the Mecca.

Brings together the best work from three earlier books now out of print, and includes poems not previously published in book form.

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Editorial Reviews

Christian Science Monitor
From her poet's craft bursts a whole gallery of wholly alive persons...Many a novelist cannot do so well in ten times the space.
New York Times
When Miss Brooks...writes out of her heart, out of her rich and living background, out of her very real talent, then she induces almost unbearable excitement.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060105365

Meet the Author

Gwendolyn Brooks (1917-2000) is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Annie Allen and one of the most celebrated African American poets. She was Poet Laureate for the state of Illinois, a National Women's Hall of Fame inductee, and a recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the National Endowment for the Arts. She received fifty honorary degrees. Her other books include A Street in Bronzeville, In the Mecca, The Bean Eaters, and Maud Martha.

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Read an Excerpt

A Street in Bronzeville

to David and Keziab Brooks


kitchenette building

We are things of dry hours and the involuntary plan,
Grayed in, and gray. "Dream" makes a giddy sound, not strong
Like "rent," "feeding a wife," "satisfying a man."

But could a dream send up through onion fumes
Its white and violet, fight with fried potatoes
And yesterday's garbage ripening in the hall,
Flutter, or sing an aria down these rooms

Even if we were willing to let it in,
Had time to warm it, keep it very clean,
Anticipate a message, let it begin?

We wonder. But not well! not for a minute!
Since Number Five is out of the bathroom now,
We think of lukewarm water, hope to get in it.
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Table of Contents

Kitchenette building 1
The mother 2
Hunchback girl : she thinks of heaven 3
A song in the front yard 4
The ballad of chocolate Mabbie 5
The preacher : ruminates behind the sermon 6
Sadie and Maud 6
When you have forgotten Sunday : the love story of De Witt Williams on his way to Lincoln Cemetery 9
The vacant lot 10
The Sundays of Satin-Legs Smith 10
Negro hero 16
Ballad of Pearl May Lee 18
Gay chaps at the bar 23
Still do I keep my look, my identity ... 23
My dreams, my works, must wait till after hell 24
Looking 25
Mentors 25
The white troops had their orders but the Negroes looked like men 26
Love note / I : surely 26
The progress 27
The birth in a narrow room 28
Maxie Allen 29
The parents : people like our marriage : Maxie and Andrew 30
Sunday chicken 30
Old relative 31
Downtown vaudeville 32
The ballad of late Annie 32
Throwing out the flowers 33
"Do not be afraid of no" 34
"Pygmies are pygmies still, though percht on Alps" 35
My own sweet good 35
The Anniad 36
Appendix to The Anniad 47
I The children of the poor 49
VI The rites for cousin Vit 52
VII I love those little booths at Benvenuti's 52
VIII Beverly Hills, Chicago 54
XI "One wants a teller in a time like this" 56
XV "Men of careful turns, haters of forks in the road" 57
Strong men, riding horses 59
The bean eaters 60
We real cool 60
Old Mary 61
A Bronzeville mother loiters in Mississippi : meanwhile, a Mississippi mother burns bacon 61
The last quatrain of the ballad of Emmett Till 68
The Chicago Defender sends a man to Little Rock 68
The lovers of the poor 71
The crazy woman 74
A lovely love 75
Bronzeville woman in a red hat 75
Bessie of Bronzeville visits Mary and Norman at a beach-house in New Buffalo 78
The ballad of Rudolph Reed 79
The egg boiler 82
A catch of shy fish 83
Boy breaking glass 88
Medgar Evers 89
Malcom X 90
The Chicago Picasso 91
The wall 92
The Blackstone rangers 94
The sermon on the warpland 97
The second sermon on the warpland 98
Riot 100
The third sermon on the warpland 101
The life of Lincoln West 106
To Don at Salaam 112
Paul Robeson 113
The boy died in my alley 114
Steam song 116
Elegy in a rainbow 117
Primer for blacks 118
To those of my sisters who kept their naturals 120
The near-Johannesburg boy 122
Shorthand possible 124
Infirm 125
The Coora flower 126
Nineteen cows in a slow line walking 127
I am a black 128
Uncle Seagram 129
Abruptly 131
An old black woman, homeless, and indistinct 132
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