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Portrait in Georgia
Portrait in Georgia
by Jean Toomer

Portrait in Georgia Appearances Quotes Page 2

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Quote #4

And her slim body, white as the ash
of black flesh after flame. (6-7)

Whew. What a doozy of a line, right? In the final moment of the poem, we learn what's really going on as Toomer merges the appearance of a white woman with that of a black corpse. Until now, we've only been able to guess at what he was getting at. But now we've got the goods. And it's an interesting moment of racial harmony, in a strange way. After all, by describing this woman in terms of a black lynching victim, Toomer manages to show us (in a gruesome way, of course), that we're not all that different looking to begin with.

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