Dark Youth of the U.S.A

A recitation to be delivered by a Negro boy, bright, clean, and neatly dressed, carrying his books to school.
Sturdy I stand, books in my hand —
Today's dark child, tomorrow's strong man:
The hope of my race
To mould a place
In America's magic land.

American am I, none can deny:
He who oppresses me, him I defy!
I am Dark Youth
Seeking the truth
Of a free life beneath our great sky.

Long a part of the Union's heart —
Years ago at the nation's start
Attucks died
That right might abide
And strength to our land impart.

To be wise and strong, then, studying long,
Seeking the knowledge that rights all wrong —
That is my mission.
Lifting my race to its rightful place
Till beauty and pride fills each dark face
Is my ambition.

So I climb toward tomorrow, out of past sorrow,
Treading the modern way
With the White and the Black whom nothing holds back —
The American Youth of today.
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