by Jean Toomer
A feast of moon and men and barking hounds, An orgy for some genius of the South With blood-hot eyes and cane-lipped scented mouth, Surprised in making folk-songs from soul sounds.
The sawmill blows its whistle, buzz-saws stop, And silence breaks the bud of knoll and hill, Soft settling pollen where plowed lands fulfill Their early promise of a bumper crop.
Smoke from the pyramidal sawdust pile Curls up, blue ghosts of trees, tarrying low Where only chips and stumps are left to show The solid proof of former domicile.
Meanwhile, the men, with vestiges of pomp, Race memories of king and caravan, High-priests, an ostrich, and a juju-man, Go singing through the footpaths of the swamp.
Their voices rise . . the pine trees are guitars, Strumming, pine-needles fall like sheets of rain . . Their voices rise . . the chorus of the cane Is caroling a vesper to the stars . .
O singers, resinous and soft your songs Above the sacred whisper of the pines, Give virgin lips to cornfield concubines, Bring dreams of Christ to dusky cane-lipped throngs. ………………………………. “Georgia Dusk” Read by Brian Harrison Directed by Walter Evans Copyright Georgia Regents University 2011 All rights reserved