Nonfiction > Upton Sinclair, ed. > The Cry for Justice

Upton Sinclair, ed. (1878–1968).
The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Literature of Social Protest.  1915.
Waifs and Strays

By Arthur Rimbaud

(French poet, 1854–1891)
BLACK in the fog and in the snow,
Where the great air-hole windows glow,
  With rounded rumps,
Upon their knees five urchins squat,
Looking down where the baker, hot,        5
  The thick dough thumps.
They watch his white arm turn the bread,
Ere through an opening flaming red
  The loaf he flings.
They smell the good bread baking, while        10
The chubby baker with a smile
  An old tune sings.
Breathing the warmth into their soul,
They squat around the red air-hole,
  As a breast warm;        15
And when, for feasters’ midnight bout,
The ready bread is taken out,
  In a cake’s form—
Sigh with low voices like a prayer,
Bending toward the light, down there        20
  Where heaven gleams
—So eager that they burst their breeches,
And in the winter wind that screeches
  Their linen streams!

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