Songs of Jamaica (1912)

My Native Land, My Home

DERE is no land dat can compare
Wid you where’er I roam;
In all de wul’ none like you fair,
My native land, my home.

Jamaica is de nigger’s place,
No mind whe’ some declare;
Although dem call we “no-land race,”
I know we home is here.

You give me life an’ nourishment,
No udder land I know;
My lub I neber can repent,
For all to you l owe.

E’en ef you mek me beggar die,
I’ll trust you all de same,
An’ none de less on you rely,
Nor saddle you wid blame.

Though you may cas’[1] me from your breas’
An’ trample me to deat’,
My heart will trus’ you none de less,
My land I won’t feget.

An’ I hope none o’ your sons would
Refuse deir strengt’ to lend,
An’ drain de last drop o’ deir blood
Their country to defend.

You draw de t’ousan’ from deir shore,
An’ all ‘long keep dem please’;[2]
De invalid come here fe cure,
You heal all deir disease.

Your fertile soil grow all o ‘t’ings[3]
To full de naygur’s wants,
‘Tis seamed wid neber-failing springs[4]
To give dew to de plants.[5]

You hab all t’ings fe mek life bles’,
But buccra ‘pail de whole
Wid gove’mint[6] an’ all de res’,
Fe worry naygur soul.

Still all dem little chupidness[7]
Caan’ tek away me lub;
De time when I’ll tu’n ‘gains’ you is
When you can’t give me grub.

  1. Cast
  2. And keep them amused and happy all along (all the time of their stay)
  3. All of (the) things
  4. Brooks
  5. The dew falls heavily in the valley-bottoms
  6. Government
  7. Those little stupidnesses


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