Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, DOWN BY THE CARIB SEA: 5. THE DANCING GIRL, by JAMES WELDON JOHNSON



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DOWN BY THE CARIB SEA: 5. THE DANCING GIRL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Do you know what it is to dance?
Last Line: As here by the carib they're known.
Subject(s): Caribbean Sea; Dancing & Dancers


Do you know what it is to dance?
Perhaps, you do know, in a fashion;
But by dancing I mean,
Not what's generally seen,
But dancing of fire and passion,
Of fire and delirious passion.

With a dusky-haired señorita,
Her dark, misty eyes near your own,
And her scarlet-red mouth,
Like a rose of the south,
The reddest that ever was grown,
So close that you catch
Her quick-panting breath
As across your own face it is blown,
With a sigh, and a moan.

Ah! that is dancing,
As here by the Carib it's known.

Now, whirling and twirling
Like furies we go;
Now, soft and caressing
And sinuously slow;
With an undulating motion,
Like waves on a breeze-kissed ocean:—
And the scarlet-red mouth
Is nearer your own,
And the dark, misty eyes
Still softer have grown.

Ah! that is dancing, that is loving,
As here by the Carib they're known.





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