Dr. Booker T. Washington to the National Negro Business League

Poet and community leader in Louisville, Kentucky, Cotter was raised in poverty with no formal education until the age of 22. He later became an educator and an advocate of black education. He is the ... [+]

'Tis strange indeed to hear us plead
For selling and for buying
When yesterday we said: "Away
With all good things but dying."

The world's ago, and we're agog
To have our first brief inning;
So let's away through surge and fog
However slight the winning.

What deeds have sprung from plow and pick!
What bank-rolls from tomatoes!
No dainty crop of rhetoric
Can match one of potatoes.

Ye orators of point and pith,
Who force the world to heed you,
What skeletons you'll journey with
Ere it is forced to feed you.

A little gold won't mar our grace,
A little ease our glory.
This world's a better biding place
When money clinks its story.