Inscription under the Picture of an Aged Negro-woman
Art thou a woman? -- so am I; and all
That woman can be, I have been, or am;
A daughter, sister, consort, mother, widow.
Whiche'er of these thou art, O be the friend
Of one who is what thou canst never be!
Look on thyself, thy kindred, home, and country,
Then fall upon thy knees, and cry "Thank GOD,
An English woman cannot be a SLAVE!"
Art thou a man? -- Oh! I have known, have loved,
And lost, all that to woman man can be;
A father, brother, husband, son, who shared
My bliss in freedom, and my woe in bondage.
-- A childless widow now, a friendless slave,
What shall I ask of thee, since I have nought
To lose but life's sad burden; nought to gain
But heaven's repose? -- these are beyond thy power;
Me thou canst neither wrong nor help; -- what then?
Go to the bosom of thy family,
Gather thy little children round thy knees,
Gaze on their innocence; their clear, full eyes,
All fix'd on thine; and in their mother, mark
The loveliest look that woman's face can wear,
Her look of love, beholding them and thee:
Then, at the altar of your household joys,
Vow one by one, vow altogether, vow
With heart and voice, eternal enmity
Against oppression by your brethern's hands:
Till man nor woman under Britain's laws,
Nor son nor daughter born within her empire,
Shall buy, or sell, or hold, or be, a slave.
James Montgomery's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Inscription under the Picture of an Aged Negro-woman by James Montgomery )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
Dr John Celes
William Butler Yeats
(13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939)
(7 May 1861 – 7 August 1941)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Christmas Trees, Robert Frost
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
- A Life-Lesson, James Whitcomb Riley
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- The Tiger, William Blake
- The Solitary Reaper, William Wordsworth
Poem of the Day
- Colour, novoti gcisakazi Calpurnia j ..
- Not feasible, hasmukh amathalal
- The heart, Leong Ming Loong
- Not shy away, hasmukh amathalal
- Time, novoti gcisakazi Calpurnia j ..
- who, Cee Bea
- Give and Take, Md. Ziaul Haque
- She has Fallen Ill, Md. Ziaul Haque
- Sometimes It Feels So Bad, Md. Ziaul Haque
- After So Many Days You Called, Md. Ziaul Haque