Volume 16:1, January 2015
Some things are very dear to me
Such things as flowers bathed by rain
Or patterns traced upon the sea
Or crocuses where snow has lain . . .
The iridescence of a gem,
The moon’s cool opalescent light,
Azaleas and the scent of them,
And honeysuckles in the night.
And many sounds are also dear
Like winds that sing among the trees
Or crickets calling from the weir
Or Negroes humming melodies.
But dearer far than all surmise
Are sudden tear-drops in your eyes.
Gwendolyn Bennett (July 8, 1902 - May 30, 1981) was active in the Harlem Renaissance period, writing poetry, fiction, and journalism, as well as creating visual art (painting, drawing, and working in batik). She lived in DC as a child (from 1906 to 1910), and moved back as an adult, when she taught in the Art Department at Howard University (1926-1929). Bennett never published her work in book form. However, her short fiction, poems, and essays appeared in Opportunity, The Crisis, Fire!!, and other journals, and was included in the anthologies Caroling Dusk and The New Negro. From 1926 to 1928, she was an assistant editor and columnist for Opportunity, a magazine sponsored by the National Urban League, where she published a monthly column on the theme of racial pride called "The Ebony Flute."