Textual History

This poem also appears in Cambridge Magazine Summer, 1920 [#] Alfonso, Dressing to Wait at Table, Sings Cambridge Magazine Summer, 1920 55 and Spring in New Hampshire 1920 [] Claude McKay Alfonso, Dressing to Wait at Table, Sings Claude McKay Spring in New Hampshire London Grant Richards Ltd. 1920 13 .


  • Editorial Notes ?
  • Highlight Variants ?


Alfonso, Dressing to Wait at Table , Sings#

  1. Alfonso is a handsome bronze-hued lad

  2. Of subtly-changing and surprising parts;

  3. His moods are storms that frighten and make glad,

  4. His eyes were made to capture women's hearts.

  5. Down in the glory-hole1 Alfonso sings

  6. An olden song of wine and clinking glasses

  7. And riotous rakes2; magnificently flings

  8. Gay kisses to imaginary lasses.

  9. Alfonso's voice of mellow music thrills

  10. Our swaying forms and steals our hearts with joy;

  11. And ,# when he soars, his fine falsetto trills

  12. Are rarest notes of gold without alloy.

  13. But,# O !# Alfonso!,# wherefore do you sing

  14. Dream-songs of carefree men and ancient places?

  15. Soon we shall shall we# be beset by clamouring

  16. Of hungry and importunate palefaces3.


Harlem Shadows (1922)

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Contemporary Reviews

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