For My People

For My People

An exploration of race and heritage, For My People is the first book by poet and novelist Margaret Walker (1915-1998) and the 41st volume of the Yale Series of Younger Poets

Considered among the most important collections of poetry written by a participant in the Black Chicago Renaissance, For My People is a series of ballad poems with memorable characters, including the New Orleans sorceress Molly Means; Kissie Lee, a tough young woman who dies "with her boots on switching blades"; Poppa Chicken, an urban drug dealer and pimp; John Henry, killed by a ten-pound hammer; and Stagolee, who kills a white officer but eludes a lynch mob. The memorable title poem evokes the power of resilience not only for black people, but for all people.

Publication Date: 
October 22, 2019