After the cloud embankments,
the lamentation of wind
and the starry descent into time,
we came to the flashing waters and shaded our eyes
from the glare.

Alone with the shore and the harbor,
the stems of the cocoanut trees,
the fronds of silence and hushed music,
we cried for the new revelation
and waited for miracles to rise.

Where elements touch and merge,
where shadows swoon like outcasts on the sand
and the tried moment waits, its courage gone–
there were we

in latitudes where storms are born.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Arna Bontemps's poem Reconnaissance


  1. rose douglas akai says:

    i think bontemps was talkin about the white invading africa for slaves,on being brought to the islands the loneliness and harsh treatment that welcomed them was terrible.

  2. Jacqueline Amos says:

    Oh but that glaze of pain swepted upon the river of niles, I rise upon the black rivers, feeling the spirit of the almighty God, but that chain that wrapped upon my feet, and the blazing fire that stood before my dignity, but yet I stood tall as a man, Spoke as a man, Lead as a man, and the furnace that awaited my body, vanish into the air, Oh yea, Oh yea, who am I to cry, as they slayed my brother to the cross, who walked the mighty fire, and felt the pain of de’ devel, I still walk tall as a man.

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