Powerful and diverse, this unique collection of African American poetry spans three centuries of writing in America. Poets bare their souls, speak their minds, trace their roots, and proclaim their dreams in the thirty-six poems compiled here. From lamentations to celebrations, the poems of Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Gwendolyn Brooks, among others, reveal the ironies of black America, juxtaposing themes of resistance and reconciliation, hope and despair.
Eminent scholar Catherine Clinton further illuminates these poems through brief biographies of the poets and notes on the text. The result is an authoritative introduction to twenty-five of America's best poets. Prize-winning artist Stephen Alcorn lends his own artistic vision and passion to the collection, providing stunning visual interpretations of each poem. Together they create a stirring tribute to these great poets.