Songs of Jamaica (1912)

My Mountain Home

De mango tree in yellow bloom,
De pretty akee seed,
De mammee where de John-to-whits[1] come
To have their daily feed,

Show you de place where I was born,
Of which I am so proud,
‘Mongst de banana-field an’ corn
On a lone mountain-road.

One Sunday marnin’ ‘fo’ de hour
Fe service-time come on,
Ma say dat I be’n born to her
Her little las’y[2] son.

Those early days be’n neber dull,
My heart was ebergreen;
How I did lub my little wul’
Surrounded by pingwin![3]

An’ growin’ up, with sweet freedom
About de yard I’d run;
An’ tired out I’d hide me from
De fierce heat of de sun.

So glad I was de fus’ day when
Ma sent me to de spring;
I was so happy feelin’ then
Dat I could do somet’ing.

De early days pass quickly ‘long,
Soon I became a man,
An’ one day found myself among
Strange folks in a strange Ian’.

My little joys, my wholesome min’,
Dey bullied out o’ me,
And made me daily mourn an’ pine
An’ wish dat I was free.

Dey taught me to distrust my life,
Dey taught me what was grief;
For months I travailed in de strife,
‘Fa’ I could find relief.

But I’ll return again, my Will,
An’ where my wild ferns grow
An’ weep for me on Dawkin’s Hill,
Dere, Willie, I shall go.

An’ dere is somet’ing near forgot,
Although I lub it best;
It is de loved, de hallowed spot
Where my dear mother rest.

Look good[4] an’ find it, Willie dear,
See dat from bush ’tis free;
Remember that my heart is near,
An’ you say you lub me.

An’ plant on it my fav’rite fern,
Which I be’n usual wear;
In days to come I shall return
To end my wand’rin’s dere.

  1. Pronounce in two syllables
  2. Lasty, dimuntive of "last"
  3. The wild pineapple (Bromelia Pinguin)
  4. Carefully


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This work (Poems by Claude McKay by Claude McKay) is free of known copyright restrictions.