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      Our Heritage - Nancy Morejon

      One of the most preeminent and internationally successful Cuban poets today. Growing up within Cuba's revolutionary process, she became the first widely published black woman poet in Cuba , winning prizes in Cuba and internationally for her work. As a Cuban revolutionary and poet, she is known for celebrating women and blackness in her poems.

      Black Man

      Your hair
             some said,
      was the devil's work from hell;
      but the hummingbird built
      her nest there, never hesitating'
      as you dangled on high from the beam,
      in front of the palace
                of the captains.
      They said, yes, dust from the road
      made you disloyal and blue-black,
      like those winter flowers
      from teh tropics, always
      so astonishing and haughty.
                    Now as you are dying
      they suspect that your smile was salty
      and your moss too soft for the act of love.
      Others assert that your sticks and branches
      brought us this shawdowy damage
      which keeps us from shining in the eyes of Europe
      and thrusts us into the ritual whirlpool,
      into that impossible rhythm
      of unnamable drums.
      We will love forver
      the mark you've left on us and your bronze spirit
      becuase ou brought that vibrant light from the past blowing by,
      that pain of having entered the battle pure of heart,
      that honest fondness for bells and rivers,
      that whisper of breath set free in the spring,
      that races to the sea, comes back,
                        then sets off again.

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