Jean Toomer

(26 December 1894 – 30 March 1967 / Washington D.C.)

Jean Toomer
Do you like this poet?
186 person liked.
157 person did not like.

Jean Toomer was an American poet and novelist and an important figure of the Harlem Renaissance. His first book Cane is considered by many as his most significant.

Life and Career

Early Life

Toomer was born Nathan Eugene Pinchback Toomer in Washington, D.C. His father was a prosperous farmer, originally born into slavery in Hancock County, Georgia. Nina Pinchback was also of mixed ethnic descent. Her father was Louisiana Governor P. B. S. Pinchback, the first African American to become governor of a U.S. state. (Both of Toomer's maternal grandparents had white fathers. Pinchback's father was a planter and his mother was a mulatto slave who was freed before ... more »

Click here to add this poet to your My Favorite Poets.

Comments about Jean Toomer

more comments »
  • Freshman - 837 Points Lamont Palmer (2/19/2006 7:35:00 AM)

    Largely obscure now, but a very fine poet in his day.

Read all 1 comments »
Famous Poets
Best Poem of Jean Toomer

People

To those fixed on white,
White is white,
To those fixed on black,
It is the same,
And red is red,
Yellow, yellow-
Surely there are such sights
In the many colored world,
Or in the mind.
The strange thing is that
These people never see themselves
Or you, or me.

Are they not in their minds?
Are we not in the world?
This is a curious blindness
For those that are color blind.
What queer beliefs
That men who believe in sights
Disbelieve in seers.

O people, if you but used
Your other eyes
You would see beings.

Read the full of People
[Hata Bildir]