Vachel Lindsay, who described himself as writing "singing poetry," was a forerunner of today's poet/performance artist.
His most famous poem, "The Congo," subtitles itself "A Study of the Negro Race." It traces what Lindsay views as primitives or savage Africans from their original home in the Congo to their life in the Americas.
From his point of view, Lindsay was an strong advocate for African-Americans, and many of his contemporaries, notable African-Americans like W.E B. Dubois and Langston Hughes, praised him in that regard.
"The Congo," the poem itself, however, despite its vivid imagery and memorable chorus of "Boomlay boomlay boomlay Booom!" is seen to depict African-Americans with strong racial stereotyping.
Lindsay's purpose in writing the poem, then, was a well intentioned attempt to romanticize African-Americans, but its purpose has ultimately been defeated by time. Today, the poem seems hopelessly mired in too many negative stereotypes to be currently used for the purpose Lindsay intended.