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As the resident poet at EcoHealth Alliance, my verse finds inspiration these days in the spectre of global pandemics. At LMU Munich's Amerika-Institut, where I tutor composition and poetics, I'm anatomizing the sonnets of E. A. Robinson for my dissertation. I also teach at Münchner Volkshochschule and Amerikahaus.

20170429

Sonnet

by James Weldon Johnson


My heart be brave, and do not falter so,   
Nor utter more that deep, despairing wail.   
Thy way is very dark and drear I know,   
But do not let thy strength and courage fail;   
For certain as the raven-winged night 
Is followed by the bright and blushing morn,   
Thy coming morrow will be clear and bright;   
’Tis darkest when the night is furthest worn.   
Look up, and out, beyond, surrounding clouds,   
And do not in thine own gross darkness grope,   
Rise up, and casting off thy hind’ring shrouds,   
Cling thou to this, and ever inspiring hope: 
   Tho’ thick the battle and tho’ fierce the fight, 
   There is a power making for the right.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.

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