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Best Famous Gwendolyn Brooks Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Gwendolyn Brooks poems. This is a select list of the best famous Gwendolyn Brooks poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Gwendolyn Brooks poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Gwendolyn Brooks poems.

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by Gwendolyn Brooks |

The Mother

 Abortions will not let you forget.
You remember the children you got that you did not get,
The damp small pulps with a little or with no hair,
The singers and workers that never handled the air.
You will never neglect or beat
Them, or silence or buy with a sweet.
You will never wind up the sucking-thumb
Or scuttle off ghosts that come.
You will never leave them, controlling your luscious sigh,
Return for a snack of them, with gobbling mother-eye.

I have heard in the voices of the wind the voices of my dim killed
children.
I have contracted. I have eased
My dim dears at the breasts they could never suck.
I have said, Sweets, if I sinned, if I seized
Your luck
And your lives from your unfinished reach,
If I stole your births and your names,
Your straight baby tears and your games,
Your stilted or lovely loves, your tumults, your marriages, aches,
and your deaths,
If I poisoned the beginnings of your breaths,
Believe that even in my deliberateness I was not deliberate.
Though why should I whine,
Whine that the crime was other than mine?--
Since anyhow you are dead.
Or rather, or instead,
You were never made.
But that too, I am afraid,
Is faulty: oh, what shall I say, how is the truth to be said?
You were born, you had body, you died.
It is just that you never giggled or planned or cried.

Believe me, I loved you all.
Believe me, I knew you, though faintly, and I loved, I loved you
All.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

The Crazy Woman

 I shall not sing a May song.
A May song should be gay.
I'll wait until November
And sing a song of gray.

I'll wait until November
That is the time for me.
I'll go out in the frosty dark
And sing most terribly.

And all the little people
Will stare at me and say,
"That is the Crazy Woman
Who would not sing in May."


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

One Wants A Teller In A Time Like This

 One wants a teller in a time like this

One's not a man, one's not a woman grown
To bear enormous business all alone.

One cannot walk this winding street with pride
Straight-shouldered, tranquil-eyed,
Knowing one knows for sure the way back home.
One wonders if one has a home.

One is not certain if or why or how.
One wants a Teller now:

Put on your rubbers and you won't catch a cold
Here's hell, there's heaven. Go to Sunday School
Be patient, time brings all good things--(and cool
Stong balm to calm the burning at the brain?)
Behold,
Love's true, and triumphs; and God's actual.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

My Dreams My Works Must Wait Till After Hell

 I hold my honey and I store my bread 
In little jars and cabinets of my will. 
I label clearly, and each latch and lid 
I bid, Be firm till I return from hell. 
I am very hungry. I am incomplete. 
And none can give me any word but Wait, 
The puny light. I keep my eyes pointed in; 
Hoping that, when the devil days of my hurt 
Drag out to their last dregs and I resume 
On such legs as are left me, in such heart 
As I can manage, remember to go home, 
My taste will not have turned insensitive 
To honey and bread old purity could love.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

To Be In Love

 To be in love 
Is to touch with a lighter hand. 
In yourself you stretch, you are well. 
You look at things 
Through his eyes. 
A cardinal is red. 
A sky is blue. 
Suddenly you know he knows too. 
He is not there but 
You know you are tasting together 
The winter, or a light spring weather. 
His hand to take your hand is overmuch. 
Too much to bear. 
You cannot look in his eyes 
Because your pulse must not say 
What must not be said. 
When he 
Shuts a door- 
Is not there_ 
Your arms are water. 
And you are free 
With a ghastly freedom. 
You are the beautiful half 
Of a golden hurt. 
You remember and covet his mouth 
To touch, to whisper on. 
Oh when to declare 
Is certain Death! 
Oh when to apprize 
Is to mesmerize, 
To see fall down, the Column of Gold, 
Into the commonest ash.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

The Ballad of Rudolph Reed

 Rudolph Reed was oaken.
His wife was oaken too.
And his two good girls and his good little man
Oakened as they grew.

"I am not hungry for berries.
I am not hungry for bread.
But hungry hungry for a house
Where at night a man in bed

"May never hear the plaster
Stir as if in pain.
May never hear the roaches
Falling like fat rain.

"Where never wife and children need
Go blinking through the gloom.
Where every room of many rooms
Will be full of room.

"Oh my home may have its east or west
Or north or south behind it.
All I know is I shall know it,
And fight for it when I find it."

The agent's steep and steady stare
Corroded to a grin.
Why you black old, tough old hell of a man,
Move your family in!

Nary a grin grinned Rudolph Reed,
Nary a curse cursed he,
But moved in his House. With his dark little wife,
And his dark little children three.

A neighbor would look, with a yawning eye
That squeezed into a slit.
But the Rudolph Reeds and children three
Were too joyous to notice it.

For were they not firm in a home of their own
With windows everywhere
And a beautiful banistered stair
And a front yard for flowers and a back for grass?

The first night, a rock, big as two fists.
The second, a rock big as three.
But nary a curse cursed Rudolph Reed.
(Though oaken as man could be.)

The third night, a silvery ring of glass.
Patience arched to endure,
But he looked, and lo! small Mabel's blood
Was staining her gaze so pure.

Then up did rise our Roodoplh Reed
And pressed the hand of his wife,
And went to the door with a thirty-four
And a beastly butcher knife.

He ran like a mad thing into the night
And the words in his mouth were stinking.
By the time he had hurt his first white man
He was no longer thinking.

By the time he had hurt his fourth white man
Rudolph Reed was dead.
His neighbors gathered and kicked his corpse.
"Nigger--" his neighbors said.

Small Mabel whimpered all night long,
For calling herself the cause.
Her oak-eyed mother did no thing
But change the bloody gauze.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

A Sunset of the City

 Already I am no longer looked at with lechery or love.
My daughters and sons have put me away with marbles and dolls,
Are gone from the house.
My husband and lovers are pleasant or somewhat polite
And night is night.

It is a real chill out,
The genuine thing.
I am not deceived, I do not think it is still summer
Because sun stays and birds continue to sing.

It is summer-gone that I see, it is summer-gone.
The sweet flowers indrying and dying down,
The grasses forgetting their blaze and consenting to brown.

It is a real chill out. The fall crisp comes
I am aware there is winter to heed.
There is no warm house
That is fitted with my need.

I am cold in this cold house this house
Whose washed echoes are tremulous down lost halls.
I am a woman, and dusty, standing among new affairs.
I am a woman who hurries through her prayers.

Tin intimations of a quiet core to be my
Desert and my dear relief
Come: there shall be such islanding from grief,
And small communion with the master shore.
Twang they. And I incline this ear to tin,
Consult a dual dilemma. Whether to dry
In humming pallor or to leap and die.

Somebody muffed it?? Somebody wanted to joke


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

Sadie and Maud

 Maud went to college.
Sadie stayed home.
Sadie scraped life
With a fine toothed comb.

She didn't leave a tangle in
Her comb found every strand.
Sadie was one of the livingest chicks
In all the land.

Sadie bore two babies
Under her maiden name.
Maud and Ma and Papa
Nearly died of shame.

When Sadie said her last so-long
Her girls struck out from home.
(Sadie left as heritage
Her fine-toothed comb.)

Maud, who went to college,
Is a thin brown mouse.
She is living all alone
In this old house.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

We Real Cool

 We real cool. We
Left School. We

Lurk late. We
Strike straight. We

Sing sin. We
Thin gin. We

Jazz June. We
Die soon.


by Gwendolyn Brooks |

To Be In Love

 To be in love 
Is to touch with a lighter hand. 
In yourself you stretch, you are well. 
You look at things 
Through his eyes. 
A cardinal is red. 
A sky is blue. 
Suddenly you know he knows too. 
He is not there but 
You know you are tasting together 
The winter, or a light spring weather. 
His hand to take your hand is overmuch. 
Too much to bear. 
You cannot look in his eyes 
Because your pulse must not say 
What must not be said. 
When he 
Shuts a door- 
Is not there_ 
Your arms are water. 
And you are free 
With a ghastly freedom. 
You are the beautiful half 
Of a golden hurt. 
You remember and covet his mouth 
To touch, to whisper on. 
Oh when to declare 
Is certain Death! 
Oh when to apprize 
Is to mesmerize, 
To see fall down, the Column of Gold, 
Into the commonest ash.