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By Langston Hughes

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  • Ed Pearl
    From: Jerry Kay [mailto:jerrykay@sbcglobal.net] Kids Who Die, by Langston Hughes This is for the kids who die, Black and white, For kids will die certainly.
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 16 6:19 AM

      From: Jerry Kay [mailto:jerrykay@...]

       

      "Kids Who Die,"
      by Langston Hughes

      This is for the kids who die,
      Black and white,
      For kids will die certainly.
      The old and rich will live on awhile,
      As always,
      Eating blood and gold,
      Letting kids die.

      Kids will die in the swamps of Mississippi
      Organizing sharecroppers
      Kids will die in the streets of Chicago
      Organizing workers
      Kids will die in the orange groves of California
      Telling others to get together
      Whites and Filipinos,
      Negroes and Mexicans,
      All kinds of kids will die
      Who don’t believe in lies, and bribes, and contentment
      And a lousy peace.

      Of course, the wise and the learned
      Who pen editorials in the papers,
      And the gentlemen with Dr. in front of their names
      White and black,
      Who make surveys and write books
      Will live on weaving words to smother the kids who die,
      And the sleazy courts,
      And the bribe-reaching police,
      And the blood-loving generals,
      And the money-loving preachers
      Will all raise their hands against the kids who die,
      Beating them with laws and clubs and bayonets and bullets
      To frighten the people—
      For the kids who die are like iron in the blood of the people—
      And the old and rich don’t want the people
      To taste the iron of the kids who die,
      Don’t want the people to get wise to their own power,
      To believe an Angelo Herndon, or even get together

      Listen, kids who die—
      Maybe, now, there will be no monument for you
      Except in our hearts
      Maybe your bodies’ll be lost in a swamp
      Or a prison grave, or the potter’s field,
      Or the rivers where you’re drowned like Leibknecht
      But the day will come—
      You are sure yourselves that it is coming—
      When the marching feet of the masses
      Will raise for you a living monument of love,
      And joy, and laughter,
      And black hands and white hands clasped as one,
      And a song that reaches the sky—
      The song of the life triumphant
      Through the kids who die.

       

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