Jessie Redmon Fauset

Black History Month Day 12.

There are so many poets who are relatively unknown to the world. I have been actively reading and researching poetry for many years, yet I never encountered this poet. I am glad I found her now. This New Yorker article sheds light on her work.

La Vie C’est La Vie
By Jessie Redmon Fauset (1882-1961)

On summer afternoons I sit
Quiescent by you in the park,
And idly watch the sunbeams gild
And tint the ash-trees’ bark.
Or else I watch the squirrels frisk
And chaffer in the grassy lane;
And all the while I mark your voice
Breaking with love and pain.
I know a woman who would give
Her chance of heaven to take my place;
To see the love-light in your eyes,
The love-glow on your face!

And there’s a man whose lightest word
Can set my chilly blood afire;
Fulfillment of his least behest
Defines my life’s desire.

But he will none of me, nor I
Of you. Nor you of her. ‘Tis said
The world is full of jests like these –
I wish that I were dead.


This poem is in the public domain.

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