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By Frank Marshall Davis

I

 


Eagerly


Like a woman hurrying to her lover


Night comes to the room of the world


And lies, yielding and content


Against the cool round face


Of the moon.


 


II


 


Night is a curious child, wandering


Between earth and sky, creeping


In windows and doors, daubing


The entire neighborhood


With purple paint.


Day


Is an apologetic mother


Cloth in hand


Following after.


 


III


 


Peddling


From door to door


Night sells


Black bags of peppermint stars


Heaping cones of vanilla moon


Until


His wares are gone


Then shuffles homeward


Jingling the gray coins


Of daybreak.


 


IV


 


Night’s brittle song, sliver-thin


Shatters into a billion fragments


Of quiet shadows


At the blaring jazz


Of a morning sun.




Frank  Marshall Davis, "Four Glimpses of Night" from Black Moods: Collected Poems, edited by John Edgar Tidwell. Copyright © 2002 by the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.  Reprinted by permission of University of Illinois Press.

Source: Black Moods: Collected Poems (University of Illinois Press, 2007)

  • Living
  • Nature

Poet Bio

Frank Marshall Davis
Poet and journalist Frank Marshall Davis was born in Arkansas City, Kansas, in 1905. He studied journalism at Kansas State Agricultural College and then worked for newspapers in Chicago before moving to Atlanta, Georgia, to edit the Atlanta Daily World. Influenced by jazz, his first book of poetry, Black Man’s Verse (1935), presented realistic portraits of African American figures. In 1948, Davis moved to Hawaii, where he raised a family, wrote, worked as an editor, and owned a newspaper business. His work regained attention during the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s, as an inspiration for younger writers.  See More By This Poet

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