Archive for the ‘Langston Hughes’ Tag

A Dream Deferred   Leave a comment

Texas Johnny Brown (11/15/09) Image by kenne

A Dream Deferred

What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore—
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over—
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

— Langston Hughes 

He Walked With The Wind   4 comments

John Lewis-art-B&WJohn Robert Lewis — Photo-Artistry by kenne

Today’s New York Times published an opinion piece written by Rep. John Lewis before he passed away last week to be published on the day of his funeral. (Click Here)

The Rev. James Lawson, a significant leader and tactician in the civil rights movement, spoke at Rep. John Lewis’s funeral today, saying Lewis practiced politics the nation “need[s] more desperately than ever before.”

Lawson ended his remarks by reading the poem “I Dream A World,” by the legendary Black poet Langston Hughes.

I Dream A World

I dream a world where man
No other man will scorn,
Where love will bless the earth
And peace its paths adorn
I dream a world where all
Will know sweet freedom’s way,
Where greed no longer saps the soul
Nor avarice blights our day.
A world I dream where black or white,
Whatever race you be,
Will share the bounties of the earth
And every man is free,
Where wretchedness will hang its head
And joy, like a pearl,
Attends the needs of all mankind-
Of such I dream, my world!

— Langston Hughes

I, Too   3 comments

Alabama2006-11-13-25Lincoln web-EditLincoln, Alabama (Old Downtown Lincoln Station By The Railroad Tracks) — Photo-Artistry by kenne

When my brother and I were in elementary school
we lived with my grandparents in Lincoln, Alabama.

My grandparents had sold the farm and moved into town.
Grandfather bought a two-pump gas station out on the Highway.

All the years since the person I remember most was Dacey Bell.
She was a young black woman who would help take care of us.

We loved Dacey Bell, and she loved us, therefore making it difficult
For us to understand why she was not allowed to eat with us.

We would ask why, but never got a clear answer — it just was.
Then one day, Dacey Bell stopped coming to be with us.

Again we would ask why — “Where had Dacey Bell gone?”
We were told Detroit, she had gone to work in Detriot.

Years later when I first read Langston Hughes’s poem, “I Too,”
The line that stood out was, “They send me to eat in the kitchen.”

. . . again I thought of Dacey Bell

— kenne

I, Too, Sing America by Langston Hughes

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well, And grow strong.

Tomorrow, I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”
Then.

Besides,
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed–

I, too, am America.

 

Live Jazz In The Old Pueblo   Leave a comment

Old Pueblo  9724 - 2010-08-01-art-72.jpgLive Jazz In The Old Pueblo — Photo-Artistry by kenne

The Weary Blues

— Langston Hughes

Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,
Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon,
     I heard a Negro play.
Down on Lenox Avenue the other night
By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light
     He did a lazy sway . . .
     He did a lazy sway . . .
To the tune o’ those Weary Blues.
With his ebony hands on each ivory key
He made that poor piano moan with melody.
     O Blues!
Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool
He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool.
     Sweet Blues!
Coming from a black man’s soul.
     O Blues!
In a deep song voice with a melancholy tone
I heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan—
     “Ain’t got nobody in all this world,
       Ain’t got nobody but ma self.
       I’s gwine to quit ma frownin’
       And put ma troubles on the shelf.”

Thump, thump, thump, went his foot on the floor.
He played a few chords then he sang some more—
     “I got the Weary Blues
       And I can’t be satisfied.
       Got the Weary Blues
       And can’t be satisfied—
       I ain’t happy no mo’
       And I wish that I had died.”
And far into the night he crooned that tune.
The stars went out and so did the moon.
The singer stopped playing and went to bed
While the Weary Blues echoed through his head.
He slept like a rock or a man that’s dead.

 

Junkyard Memories   4 comments

Willow Springs Ranch-8226_junk blogJunkyard Memories– Image by kenne

 I been scared and battered.

My hopes the wind done scattered.

 Snow has friz me,
 Sun has baked me,

Looks like between 'em they done
 Tried to make me

Stop laughin', stop lovin', stop livin'--
 But I don't care!
 I'm still here!

 

— Langston Hughes

House Finch   Leave a comment

House Finch-0028 blog IIHouse Finch — Computer Art by kenne

Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.

— from the poem “Dreams” by Langston Hughes

Low Tide At Puerto Peñasco — A Thing Of Dreams   Leave a comment

Puerto Penasco September 2013-0016 blog signatureLow Tide At Puerto Peñasco Image by kenne

As I Grew Older

It was a long time ago.
I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright like a sun—
My dream.
And then the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky—
The wall.
Shadow.
I am black.
I lie down in the shadow.
No longer the light of my dream before me,
Above me.
Only the thick wall.
Only the shadow.
My hands!
My dark hands!
Break through the wall!
Find my dream!
Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night,
To break this shadow
Into a thousand lights of sun,
Into a thousand whirling dreams
Of sun!

—  Langston Hughes

Listening to Texas Johnny Brown This Morning   Leave a comment

Diunna Benefit  5518 Texas Johnny Brown blogTexas Johnny Brown (February 22, 1928 – July 1, 2013) at the Big Easy, Houston, Texas (February 15, 2009)
— Image by kenne 

Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,

Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon,

I heard a Negro play.

Down on Lenox Avenue the other night

By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light

He did a lazy sway. . . .

He did a lazy sway. . . .

To the tune o’ those Weary Blues.

With his ebony hands on each ivory key

He made that poor piano moan with melody.

O Blues!

Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool

He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool.

Sweet Blues!

Coming from a black man’s soul.

O Blues!

In a deep song voice with a melancholy tone

I heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan—

“Ain’t got nobody in all this world,

Ain’t got nobody but ma self.

I’sgwine to quit ma frownin’

And put ma troubles on the shelf.”

— from The Weary Blues by Langston Hughes

Bayou Blues   Leave a comment

Pete & John (1 of 1) art II blogBayou Blues (Pete Mayes and John Broussard at Double Bayou Dance Hall, May, 2003) — Computer Painting by kenne)

Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.

— Langston Hughes

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