Fruit Of The Flower

My father is a quiet man
With sober, steady ways;
For simile, a folded fan;
His nights are like his days.
My mother's life is puritan,
No hint of cavalier,
A pool so calm you're sure it can
Have little depth to fear.

And yet my father's eyes can boast
How full his life has been;
There haunts them yet the languid ghost
Of some still sacred sin.

And though my mother chants of God,
And of the mystic river,
I've seen a bit of checkered sod
Set all her flesh aquiver.

Why should he deem it pure mischance
A son of his is fain
To do a naked tribal dance
Each time he hears the rain?

Why should she think it devil's art
That all my songs should be
Of love and lovers, broken heart,
And wild sweet agony?

Who plants a seed begets a bud,
Extract of that same root;
Why marvel at the hectic blood
That flushes this wild fruit?

by Countee Cullen

Other poems of CULLEN (27)

Comments (15)

Beautiful
Amazing poem.. So deep and well expressed
My mother's life is puritan. Nice poem! Sylva-Onyema Uba.
A wonderful poem about conservatism opposing self-expression and talent.
As time passes by, we sometimes forget the flushed, passionate energy of youth. This is an endearing reminder to those of us who have passed into *sober, steady ways* to remember the innocent joy of youth, and perhaps rekindle a bit of that lost magic.
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