Verse > Anthologies > James Weldon Johnson, ed. > The Book of American Negro Poetry
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James Weldon Johnson, ed. (1871–1938).  The Book of American Negro Poetry.  1922.
 
La Vie C’est la Vie
 
Jessie Fauset
 
 
ON summer afternoons I sit
Quiescent by you in the park,
And idly watch the sunbeams gild
And tint the ash-trees’ bark.
 
Or else I watch the squirrels frisk        5
And chaffer in the grassy lane;
And all the while I mark your voice
Breaking with love and pain.
 
I know a woman who would give
Her chance of heaven to take my place;        10
To see the love-light in your eyes,
The love-glow on your face!
 
And there’s a man whose lightest word
Can set my chilly blood afire;
Fulfilment of his least behest        15
Defines my life’s desire.
 
But he will none of me,
Nor I Of you. Nor you of her. ’Tis said
The world is full of jests like these.—
I wish that I were dead.        20
 

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