her mother lives?
If so, will she be too proud of her White
face to marry a Black mate; and yet too low in her connections to win a White one?
Will she remain deaf to honest love, yet open to irregular proposals?
Who, considering how likely all these things are to happen, will not hope that she may fly?
Yet, if she flies, what then?
Suppose she prove to be as quick in brain as she is fair in face.
She may become an artist, singer, actress, authoress.
She may conceal her birth of shame, her youth of misery, her taint of blood.
She may assume a false name, assert a false nationality.
She may be Mademoiselle This, Seiora That; yet fear will dog her steps.
At every whisper she will faint, at every exclamation start.
Imagine her a queen of song, a popular novelist; with crowds of worshippers at her feet, one favoured more than others; when some school-mate from Virginia
comes across her path.
“Dat 'oman buffal!
Hi, hi, hee!
Dat 'oman ole gal-dat 'oman nigger wench!”