Read Undersong: Chosen Poems Old and New by Audre Lorde Free Online
Book Title: Undersong: Chosen Poems Old and New|
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 7.94 MB
ISBN 13: 9780393033953
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Reader ratings: 6.8
The author of the book: Audre Lorde
Edition: W. W. Norton & Company
Date of issue: February 4th 1993
Read full description of the books:
I didn't love this the way I thought I would, if that makes sense. I've read Lorde's work before, but I never sat down and read a book of her poetry, cover-to-cover. After a while they all seemed to be the same poem, and they were so heavy with metaphor that I often didn't know what she was trying to say.
These are some of my favorites:
Nothing says that you must
see me in the street
with us so close together at that red light
that a blind man could have smelled his grocer—
and nothing says that you must
as we pass in the street,
but we have known each other too well
in the dark
and it hurts me when you do not speak.
And no one you were with was quite so fine
that I won't remember this and
suffer you in turn and
in my own fashion which is certainly
not in the street.
For I can count on my telephone
ringing some evening and you
exploding into my room through the receiver
kissing and licking my ear....
I hope you will learn your thing
from some of those spiteless noseless
people who surround you
before the centipede in you
runs out of worlds
one for each foot.
It is the sink of the afternoon
the children asleep or weary.
I have finished planting the tomatoes
in this brief sun after four days of rain
brown earth under my fingernails
honey-thick sun on the back of my neck
the tips of my fingers are stinging
from the rich earth
but more so from the lack
of your body.
I have been to this place before
blood seething commanded
my fingers fresh from the earth
dream of a furrow
whose name should be you.
Change of Season
Am I to be cursed forever with becoming
somebody else on the way to myself?
Walking backward I fall into summers
behind me salt with wanting
lovers or friends a job wider shoes
a cool drink something to bite into freshness
place to hide out of the rain
out of the shifting melange of seasons
where cruel boys I chased
and their skinny dodgeball sisters
flamed and died in becoming
the brown autumn
left in search of who tore the streamers down
at graduation …
Who Said It Was Simple
There are so many roots to the tree of anger
that sometimes the branches shatter
before they bear.
Sitting in Nedicks
the women rally before they march
discussing the problematic girls
they hire to make them free.
An almost white counterman passes
a waiting brother to serve them first
and the ladies neither notice nor reject
the slighter pleasures of their slavery.
But I who am bound by my mirror
as well as my bed
see causes in color
as well as sex
and sit here wondering
which me will survive
all these liberations.
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Read information about the authorAudre Lorde is a revolutionary Black feminist. Lorde's poetry was published very regularly during the 1960s — in Langston Hughes' 1962 New Negro Poets, USA; in several foreign anthologies; and in black literary magazines. During this time, she was politically active in civil rights, anti-war, and feminist movements. Her first volume of poetry, The First Cities (1968), was published by the Poet's Press and edited by Diane di Prima, a former classmate and friend from Hunter College High School. Dudley Randall, a poet and critic, asserted in his review of the book that Lorde "does not wave a black flag, but her blackness is there, implicit, in the bone."
Her second volume, Cables to Rage (1970), which was mainly written during her tenure at Tougaloo College in Mississippi, addressed themes of love, betrayal, childbirth and the complexities of raising children. It is particularly noteworthy for the poem "Martha", in which Lorde poetically confirms her homosexuality: "[W]e shall love each other here if ever at all." Later books continued her political aims in lesbian and gay rights, and feminism. In 1980, together with Barbara Smith and Cherríe Moraga, she co-founded Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press, the first U.S. publisher for women of colour. Lorde was State Poet of New York from 1991 to 1992.
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