Poems about poverty in africa

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poems about poverty in africa

The 100 Best African American Poems by Nikki Giovanni

Hear voices contemporary and classic as selected by New York Times bestselling author Nikki Giovanni

Award-winning poet and writer Nikki Giovanni takes on the impossible task of selecting the 100 best African American works from classic and contemporary poets. Out of necessity, Giovanni admits she cheats a little, selecting a larger, less round number.

The result is this startlingly vibrant collection that spans from historic to modern, from structured to freeform, and reflects the rich roots and visionary future of African American verse. These magnetic poems are an exciting mix of most-loved classics and daring new writing. From Gwendolyn Brooks and Langston Hughes to Tupac Shakur, Natasha Trethewey, and many others, the voice of a culture comes through in this collection, one that is as talented, diverse, and varied as its people.

African American poems are like all other poems: beautiful, loving, provocative, thoughtful, and all those other adjectives I can think of. Poems know no boundaries. They, like all Earth citizens, were born in some country, grew up on some culture, then in their blooming became citizens of the Universe. Poems fly from heart to heart, head to head, to whisper a dream, to share a condolence, to congratulate, and to vow forever. The poems are true. They are translated and they are celebrated. They are sung, they are recited, they are delightful. They are neglected. They are forgotten. They are put away. Even in their fallow periods they sprout images. And fight to be revived. And spring back to life with a bit of sunshine and caring.
-Nikki Giovanni

Read Gwendolyn Brooks Kwame Alexander Tupac Shakur Langston Hughes Mari Evans Kevin Young Asha Bandele Amiri Baraka

Hear Ruby Dee Novella Nelson Nikki Giovanni Elizabeth Alexander Marilyn Nelson Sonia Sanchez

And many, many, more

Nikki Giovanni is an award-winning poet, writer, and activist. She is the author of more than two dozen books for adults and children, including Bicycles, Quilting the Black-Eyed Pea, Racism 101, Blues: For All the Changes, and Love Poems. Her childrens book-plus-audio compilation Hip Hop Speaks to Children was awarded the NAACP Image Award. Her childrens book Rosa, a picture-book retelling of the Rosa Parks story, was a Caldecott Honor Book and winner of the Coretta Scott King Award. Both books were New York Times bestsellers. Nikki is a Grammy nominee for her spoken-word album The Nikki Giovanni Poetry Collection and has been nominated for the National Book Award. She has been voted Woman of the Year by Essence, Mademoiselle, and Ladies Home Journal. She is a University Distinguished Professor at Virginia Tech, where she teaches writing and literature.
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Published 24.11.2018

Thuli Zuma at POETRY AFRICA 2014

In the land of dull knives I was a sharpened spoon master of grapefruit lake bright at midnight dark at nine weather swirled pin wheel frigate birds drove themselves into the teeth of a hailstorm feathers dancing on the agate. But when I. I bear the title of them born and raised In the sands that I.
Nikki Giovanni


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Skip to main content. Learn more about other poetry terms. Limos on my shoulder. Empty save for self. Nephthys Solus.

Living in the forlorn world of slavery, being discriminated against by some of the white race- due to my colored face. Because of my opposite pigmentation of the Anglo-Saxon man who decided to leave me in a destitute hole with no substance in my stomach to hold. The government does not care as they are the cause of African American poverty lacking humanly despair. Throughout the years I have tried to cover my painful tears; watching the evil man who keeps me oppressed, so I stress with depression that will eat away at my inner flesh. Until then, my home is anywhere I lay, given that I have no financial means to rent a place to stay. Yet, I still pray that hunger, homeliness and poverty will soon go away.

Kenneth Maswabi

Poverty is a blackhole Centered in the middle of Africa Spinning out of control Ravaging the highlands of Ethiopia And the great rift valleys of East Africa Exposing a land full of corruption And a bunch of misfits in high places Ruling over Kingdoms full of hungry faces Poverty roams the African plains From the dunes of the Kalahari desert To the grasslands of the Masai Mara Soaring far above the African sky In a daylight show of domination A brutal dictatorship reigns in Africa Poverty is a monster from hell Dressed in a coat of fury and a pair of sunglasses Red eyes and steam oozing nostrils It has an appetite for young African children Tender and juicy little souls Gorged at breakfast, lunch and dinner Baked into small little pancakes Roasted on hot charcoal fire And sliced into pieces of Apple pie. Great work! Thanks for sharing this poem with us. Report Reply. Share this poem:. Kenneth Maswabi Maun, Botswana.

Fields of Gold - Children of Poverty - Fields of gold beneath their feet, Yet at night the homeless sleep on the street. The wealth of a country gold hidden deep in its soil, Yet to reclaim it, the price, the life of miners who toil Daily in darkness and sweat stenched heat To put gold on fingers this cities heart beat. Josi the city, carved out from its gold, Yet on every street the poor to behold. Every day they pass over gold reams Yet a roof over their head remains just a dream, And food in their stomachs, shoes on their feet, The child headed families, struggle to meet. No fire to warm them, or food that is hot, For the poor in Johannesburg, this is their lot.


  1. Juanita R. says:

    POVERTY IN AFRICA - Poem by Nzongi Mwero

  2. Norris S. says:

    There are 1.

  3. Magnolia P. says:

    Poverty Poems - Poems about Poverty High On Poems

  4. Webkilljiter says:

    I visited a shanty town, in Africa no less, the people there were starving, living in a mess.

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