LANGSTON HUGHES (8:00)

The Weary Blues

 

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.

 

Langston Hughes (1926)

31 thoughts on “LANGSTON HUGHES (8:00)”

  1. I will be doing mood indigo by duke ellington (the poetic version before it was set to music). I will talk alittle but about the poem and why it turned into a song.

  2. “White nor Black” – Langston Hughes
    “My old man’s a white old man
    And my old mother’s black.
    If ever I cursed my white old man
    I take my curses back.
    If ever I cursed my black old mother
    And wished she were in hell,
    I’m sorry for the evil wish
    And now I wish her well.
    My old man died in a big fine house
    My ma died in a shack
    I wonder were I’m going to die,
    Being neither white nor black?”

  3. “White nor Black” – Langstin Hughes

    “My old man’s a white old man
    And my old mother’s black.
    If ever I cursed my white old man
    I take my curses back.
    If ever I cursed my black old mother
    And wished she were in hell,
    I’m sorry for the evil wish
    And now I wish her well.
    My old man died in a big fine house
    My ma died in a shack
    I wonder were I’m going to die,
    Being neither white nor black?”

  4. Their Eyes Were Watching God

    Zora Neale Hurston

    “It is so easy to be hopeful in the daytime when you can see the things you wish on. But it was night, it stayed night. Night was striding across nothingness with the whole round world in his hands . . . They sat in company with the others in other shanties, their eyes straining against cruel walls and their souls asking if He meant to measure their puny might against His. They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.”

    Here is my poem for the Harlem Renaissance Assignment.

  5. The Bronze Legacy

    Effie Lee Newsome, 1885 – 1979

    (To a Brown Boy)

    ‘Tis a noble gift to be brown, all brown,
    Like the strongest things that make up this earth,
    Like the mountains grave and grand,
    Even like the very land,
    Even like the trunks of trees—
    Even oaks, to be like these!
    God builds His strength in bronze.
    To be brown like thrush and lark!
    Like the subtle wren so dark!
    Nay, the king of beasts wears brown;
    Eagles are of this same hue.
    I thank God, then, I am brown.
    Brown has mighty things to do.

    Dr. Jones above is the poet and poem in which I would like to learn about and recite.

  6. Countee Cullen
    Incident
    Once riding in old Baltimore, 
    Heart-filled, head-filled with glee, 
    I saw a Baltimorean 
    Keep looking straight at me. 

    Now I was eight and very small, 
    And he was no whit bigger, 
    And so I smiled, but he poked out 
    His tongue, and called me, ‘Nigger.’ 

    I saw the whole of Baltimore 
    From May until December; 
    Of all the things that happened there 
    That’s all that I remember.

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