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Marcus Garvey: Look For Me in the Whirlwind

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Primary Sources: Garvey's Poetry and Songs

Keep Cool
Suns have set and suns will rise
Upon many gloomy lives;
Those who sit around and say:
"Nothing good comes down our way."
Some say: "What's the use to try,
Life is awful hard and dry."
If they'd bring such news to you,
This is what you ought to do.

Let no trouble worry you;
Keep cool, keep cool!
Don't get hot like some folk do,
Keep cool, keep cool!
What's the use of prancing high
While the world goes smiling by.
You can win if you would try,
Keep cool, keep cool.

Throw your troubles far away,
Smile a little every day,
And the sun will start to shine,
Making life so true and fine.
Do not let a little care
Fill your life with grief and fear:
Just be calm, be brave and true,
Keep your head and you'll get through.

Let no trouble worry you;
Keep cool, keep cool!
just be brave and ever true;
Keep cool, keep cool!
If they'd put you in a flame,
Though you should not bear the blame,
Do not start to raising cain,
Keep cool, keep cool.

The Black Woman (February 28, 1927)
Black queen of beauty, thou hast given color to the world!
Among other women thou art royal and the fairest!
Like the brightest of jewels in the regal diadem,
Shin'st thou, Goddess of Africa, Nature's purest emblem!

Black men worship at thy virginal shrine of truest love,
Because in thine eyes are virtue's steady and holy mark,
As we see in no other, clothed in silk or fine linen,
From ancient Venus, the Goddess, to mythical Helen.

When Africa stood at the head of the elder nations,
The Gods used to travel from foreign lands to look at thee:
On couch of costly Eastern materials, all perfumed,
Reclined thee, as in thy path flow'rs were strewn - sweetest that bloomed.

Thy transcendent marvelous beauty made the whole world mad,
Bringing Solomon to tears as he viewed thy comeliness;
Anthony and the elder Caesars wept at thy royal feet,
Preferring death than to leave thy presence, their foes to meet.

You, in all ages, have attracted the adoring world,
And caused many a bloody banner to be unfurled:
You have sat upon exalted and lofty eminence,
To see a world fight in your ancient African defense.

Today you have been dethroned, through the weakness of your men,
While, in frenzy, those who of yore craved your smiles and your hand-
Those who were all monsters and could not with love approach you-
Have insulted your pride and now attack your good virtue.

Because of disunion you became mother of the world,
Giving tinge of robust color to five continents,
Making a greater world of millions of colored races,
Whose claim to beauty is reflected through our black faces.

From the handsome Indian to European brunette,
There is a claim for that credit of their sunny beauty
That no one can e'er to take from thee, O Queen of all women

Who have borne trials and troubles and racial burden.
Once more we shall, in Africa, fight and conquer for you,
Restoring the pearly crown that proud Queen Sheba did wear:
Yea, it may mean blood, it may mean death; but still we shall fight,

Bearing our banners to Vict'ry, men of Afric's might.
Superior Angels look like you in Heaven above,
For thou art fairest, queen of the seasons, queen of our love:
No condition sball make us ever in life desert thee,
Sweet Goddess of the ever green land and placid blue sea.

The Battle Hymn of Africa
Africa's sun is shining above the horizon clear,
The day for us is rising, for black men far and near;
Our God is in the front line, the heav'nly batallion leads,
Onward, make your banners shine, ye men of noble deeds.

There's a flag we love so well-
The red, the black and green,
Greatest emblem tongues can tell,
The brightest ever seen.

When pandemonium breaks, the earth will tremble fast,
Nor oceans, seas nor lakes shall save the first or last;
Our suffering has been long, our cries to God ascending;
We have counted ev'ry wrong which calls for an amending.

So into battle let us go, with the Cross before;
The Angels, great, from high to low, watch forevermore;
We see the enemy scatter, and watch their ranks divide -
With God there is no fetter for whom He doth provide.

All God's children, in trouble, or burdened down with care,
No matter where, how humble, His love is ever there;
So cheerful let our courage be and rally for the King,
The Saviour, Christ, the Lord, is He, whom angels tidings bring.

Ho, Africa, victorious! See, the foe goes down!
The Christ and Simon lead us to wear the triumphant crown;
Jesus remembers dearly the sacrifice with the cross,
So raise those banners gladly-never to suffer loss!

And so the war is ending, the victor's palm is ours,
Crushed 'neath a sorry bending, like dead, fallen flowers
Thus lay the proud men of the day, all lost, forever,
Where the demons never say to God, "We'll deliver."

Halt! America! (1934)
America of white men's rule,
The God of Heaven calls to you;
You used the black man as a tool,
And proved of faith and love untrue.

Your Christian faith is all a lie,
If you do not some changes make;
You brought us here to make us die,
But God will save us for His sake.

There is a call to make things right,
And to your conscience we appeal:
For peace we are, we want no fight,
We ask you but the wound to heal.

We've laboured long in many fields,
To clear your waste and barren lands:
We fought your wars with manly shields,
But you've cast us off your hands.

America will flourish great,
If love and truth abide within;
And so we call upon the State,
To free itself from deadly sin.

The Negro's cause is holy word,
And God proclaims the mighty truth,
The angels speak with flaming sword,
And it is so to man forsooth.

The Fall Of Slavery (1937)
(For the Benefit of Haile Selassie and Benito Mussolini.)

The man who holds a slave and laughs at ease
Is devil with a heart of hardest stone:
The man who also lives with pride to tease
Humanity should oft be left alone.
All men should have the freedom of all rights,
For nature made no sovereign but the soul,
And all should look toward the glorious heights,
To seek the sweet enjoyment of the whole.

When selfish creature, void of love for man,
Inflicts his will upon the helpless weak,
All else should spurn him, as they can,
To force him from the sovereign evil peak.
The thoughtful man who loves his brothers well,
Is king to keep upon an earthly throne;
But slavers all should go right down to Hell,
To sleep upon the stabs of burning stone.

The precious life of man demands a will
To fight to hold the trust of his defence,
Though tyrants would all manly freedom kill,
True knights of love should guard the human fence.
Let's set the human standard high for all,
And see that pompous kings and lords obey,
And when they fail through sin, proclaim their fall,
And hasten in for all the freedman's day.

Get Up And Do (1935)
You sit and quarrel all your life,
And blame the moving world at large:
You fail to enter in the strife,
To sail in fortune's happy barge.

Get up my man and do the "stuff"
That leads to blazing glory's fame:
Hold on, and be like good Macduff,
And damn the man who'd foil your name.

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