By Laurie Cooper
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.
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, 0 Queen of all
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 shall make us ever in life desert thee,
Sweet Goddess of the ever green land and placid blue sea.
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