Sharing Stories Inspiring Change

Share

"Bread and Roses" poem

 

As we go marching, marching, in the beauty of the day,

A million darkened kitchens, a thousand mill lofts gray,

Are touched with all the radiance that a sudden sun discloses,

For the people hear us singing: Bread and Roses! Bread and Roses!

As we go marching, marching, we battle too for men,

For they are women's children, and we mother them again.

Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;

Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses.

As we go marching, marching, unnumbered women dead

Go crying through our singing their ancient call for bread.

Small art and love and beauty their drudging spirits knew.

Yes, it is bread we fight for, but we fight for roses too.

As we go marching, marching, we bring the greater days,

The rising of the women means the rising of the race.

No more the drudge and idler, ten that toil where one reposes,

But a sharing of life's glories: Bread and roses, bread and roses.

Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;

Hearts starve as well as bodies; bread and roses, bread and roses.


James Oppenheim, "Bread and Roses," The American Magazine, December, 1911.

Rights: 
Public Domain

Related content:

Description: 
Text of the Lyrics to the song "Bread and Roses."
Extent number: 
1
Extent type: 
(pages)
Author(s): 
Oppenheim, James

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. ""Bread and Roses" poem." (Viewed on April 19, 2014) <http://jwa.org/media/bread-and-roses-poem>.