The Park in Spring

  1. The vivid grass with visible delight

  2. Springing triumphant from the pregnant earth;

  3. The butterflies, and sparrows in brief flight

  4. Chirping and dancing for the season's birth,

  5. And dandelions and rare daffodils

  6. That hold the deep-stirred heart with hands of gold

  7. And thrushes sending forth their joyous trills;

  8. Not these, not these did I at first behold;

  9. But, seated on the benches daubed with green,

  10. The human derelicts, some fast asleep,

  11. With here and there a woman wedged between,

  12. And, over all, life's shadows dark and deep:

  13. Moaning I turned away, for misery

  14. I have the strength to bear but not to see.


Harlem Shadows (1922)

Additional Poems by Claude McKay

Contemporary Reviews

Supplementary Texts