Poems about the struggles of being black

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poems about the struggles of being black

I Am the Darker Brother: An Anthology of Modern Poems by African Americans by Arnold Adoff


This book is a very powerful collection of poems written by African Americans. Some poems were lighthearted and happy and others were written with anger and dismay. They talked about everything from slavery, to discrimination, to love, to the earth, to being comfortable in your own skin. What is great about this book, is that no matter who is reading it, there is a poem that they can relate to in the book. Everyone has had a struggle in life, and these poems embody the everyday struggles of African Americans. This is a great book for youth to be exposed to so they can gain insight into some of this great literature written by African Americans. It is not too often that works like these are showcased and it would be great to have students read and learn using this collection.
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Published 30.12.2018

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Arnold Adoff

Poems For When Life Is Just Hard

Lamont Lilly is a NC based journalist, activist and community organizer. The presented selections are from his forthcoming debut Honor in the Ghetto Fall Plain but poignant, his poetry directly derives from the marginalized, from the streets of mass struggle, freedom fighting and the continued pursuit of Black Liberation. The Black Youth Project is a platform that highlights the voices and ideas of Black millennials. Through knowledge, voice, and action, we work to empower and uplift the lived experiences of young Black Americans today.

February is Black History Month, and to celebrate the contributions black poets have made, and continue to make, to the richness of American poetry, we asked twelve contemporary black poets from across the country to choose one poem that should be read this month and to tell us a bit about why. Them lounging streetcornerwise in our consciousness under some flickered neon of mannish-boy dream. Someplace where the rhyme is always as good as the reason, anyplace where the cost of gin is precious enough to thin but solemn enough to pour on the sidewalk for the departed, anyplace where the schools are overcrowded and underfunded and black and brown enough to not really miss the Seven, who were underperforming on the standardized tests and had been diagnosed as ADD or BDD status anyway. Anyplace where sin gets hymned out—straitlaced into storefront chapels on Sunday mornings—but sewn back into Saturday night doo-wopped breakbeats, finger-snapped shuffles of promise. We know the Seven.


Login or register to post a comment. I love this the feeling and message can be applyed to any life experience. I love the honesty--it sucks to think it honest but it is.

Warning: There is poetry somewhere in this blog, but you are going to have to dig deep to find it… The things I am reading and the things I am writing and the things I am doing are all making me think about America and Americanness. It is actually a profoundly insightful and clever retort, as that has to be the only available conclusion one could reach. In other words, it is going to be about race if you bring it up, and since you have brought it up, you have to be saying that you want me to vote for a white person because that person is not black. Instead I offered a statement that sounded on the surface counter-intuitive and wrong. And by people, I mean first and foremost, black people. In other words, the reticence that some blacks feel about Obama is actually a kind of xenophobia, the worst form of patriotism that seems unlikely for a people who have fought so hard to be accepted as Americans in their own country.

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