O, de light-bugs glimmer down de lane,
    Merlindy!   Merlindy!
O, de whip’-will callin’ notes ur pain—
    Merlindy, O, Merlindy!
O, honey lub, my turkle dub,
    Doan’ you hyuh my bawnjer ringin’,
While de night-dew falls an’ de ho’n owl calls
    By de ol’ ba’n gate Ise singin’.

O, Miss ’Lindy, doan’ you hyuh me, chil’,
    Merlindy!   Merlindy!
My lub fur you des dribe me wil’—
    Merlindy, O, Merlindy!
I’ll sing dis night twel broad day-light,
    Ur bu’s’ my froat wid tryin’,
’Less you come down, Miss ’Lindy Brown,
    An’ stops dis ha’t f’um sighin’!


From The Book of American Negro Poetry (Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1922), edited by James Weldon Johnson. This poem is in the public domain.