The Creation by James Weldon Johnson
A Poem

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Synopsis

A poetic retelling of the creation story from Genesis, by a distinguished African-American poet and preacher, describes the making of the heavens and the earth, from the first light, to the coming of the animals, to the creation of humankind.
 

About James Weldon Johnson

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Born in Jacksonville Fla. in 1871, James Weldon Johnson was one of the leaders of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s. His career was varied and included periods as a teacher, lawyer, songwriter (with his brother J. Rosamond Johnson), and diplomat (as United States Consul to Puerto Cabello, Venezuela, from 1906 to 1909). Among his most famous writings are Autobiography of an Ex-Coloured Man, published anonymously in 1912, and God's Trombones: Seven Negro Sermons in Verse (1927), the winner of the Harmon Gold Award. He was also editor of several anthologies of African-American poetry and spirituals, and in 1933 his autobiography, Along This Way, was published. He served as Secretary to the NAACP from 1916 to 1930 and was a professor of literature at Fisk University in Nashville from 1930 until his death in 1938. Carla Golembe is the author and illustrator of DOG MAGIC and the award-winning illustrator of five books for children, including WHY THE SKY IS FAR AWAY, which was chosen as a New York Times Best Illustrated Book. She and her husband live in Maryland.
 
Published September 1, 1993 by Little Brown & Co (Juv). 30 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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``Then God smiled./And the light broke./And the darkness rolled up on one side./And the light stood shining on the other./And God said: That's good!'' This poem first appeared in God's Trombones in 1927;

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Publishers Weekly

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The biblical story of creation is retold here in resonant, inspiring verse set against a jubilant background of bold colors. As an endnote explains, the poem, which originally appeared in Johnson's Go

Aug 30 1993 | Read Full Review of The Creation: A Poem

Publishers Weekly

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As an endnote explains, the poem, which originally appeared in Johnson's God's Trombones (1927), was inspired by a sermon delivered in 1919 by a black country preacher in Kansas, and pays tribute to the old-time black preachers who, wrote Johnson, gave slaves and their descendants ``their first s...

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Publishers Weekly

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Illustrating this verse adaptation of the biblical Creation story, Ransome intersperses paintings of natural wonders with scenes of an African American man reciting to an audience of rapt youngsters.

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The Wall Street Journal

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The Calvinist pilgrims who founded the New England colonies had rebelled against England by leaving it, but they were certainly not rebels against a firm social order or against the idea of authority itself.

Dec 31 2011 | Read Full Review of The Creation: A Poem

Open Letters Monthly

I fell in love with Sofonisba Anguissola years ago, when I saw her little self-portrait in Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts and was ensnared by her eyes – they were enormous liquid orbs set in a soft, pale face, and they seemed wise and sad beyond the years of the young woman to whom they belonged.

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