Langston Hughes

You And Your Whole Race

You and your whole race. Look down upon the town in which you live And be ashamed. Look down upon white folks And upon yourselves And be ashamed That such supine poverty exists there, That such stupid ignorance breeds children there Behind such humble shelters of despair— That you yourselves have not the sense to care Nor the manhood to stand up and say I dare you to come one step nearer, evil world, With your hands of greed seeking to touch my throat, I dare you to come one step nearer me: When you can say that you will be free!

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