James Weldon Johnson
James Weldon Johnson Poems
- The Creation And God stepped out on space, And he looked ...
- Go Down, Death Weep not, weep not, She is not dead; She's ...
- Lift Every Voice And Sing Lift ev'ry voice and sing, Till ...
- Listen, Lord: A Prayer O Lord, we come this ...
- A Mid-Day Dreamer I love to sit alone, and dream, And dream,...
- Fragment The hand of Fate cannot be stayed, The course of ...
- An Explanation Look heah! 'Splain to me de reason Why you ...
James Weldon Johnson (June 17, 1871 – June 26, 1938) was an American author, politician, diplomat, critic, journalist, poet, anthologist, educator, lawyer, songwriter, and early civil rights activist. Johnson is remembered best for his leadership within the NAACP, as well as for his writing, which includes novels, poems, and collections of folklore. He was also one of the first African-American professors at New York University. Later in life he was a professor of creative literature and writing at Fisk University.
Johnson was born in Jacksonville, Florida, the son of Helen Louise Dillet and James Johnson. His brother was the composer John Rosamond Johnson. Johnson was first ... more »
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Quotationsmore quotations »
''It is from the blues that all that may be called American music derives its most distinctive character.''James Weldon Johnson (1871-1938), U.S. author, poet. Black Manhattan, ch. 11 (1930).
''O black and unknown bards of long ago, How came your lips to touch the sacred fire?''James Weldon Johnson (1871-1938), U.S. author, poet. "O Black and Unknown Bards," st. 1 (written c. 1907), publ. In Fifty Years and Other Poems (1917)...
And God stepped out on space,
And he looked around and said:
I'll make me a world.
And far as the eye of God could see
Darkness covered everything,
Blacker than a hundred midnights
Down in a cypress swamp.
Then God smiled,
And the light broke,
And the darkness rolled up on one side,
And the light stood shining on the other,
And God said: That's good!
Then God reached out and took the light in his hands,
And God rolled the light around in his hands
Until he made the sun;
And he set that sun a-blazing in the heavens.