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Hello. Come on in. The daddy writes about current events, literature, music and, once in a while, drops something on you from back in the day to make you pause and ponder, stop and stare, and begin to wonder. Who knows? You may start to pace the floor, shake your head from side to side, then fall down on bended knees in a praying position and cry, "Lawd, have mercy! What is this world coming to?" Check yourself! But this blog is NOT about the daddy. It's about you: your boos, your fam, your hood, your country...our hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow. So let's make a pact: the daddy will put it on the track if you'll chase it down and hit him back. Together, we can definitely take it to another level. Shall we?"

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Poetry You Should Know: I, Too, Sing America

During this historic presidential election year, I'm feeling this poem that was sent to me by Tami over at whattamisaid.
"Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly."
--Langston Hughes

This week's poet is Langston Hughes.

I, Too

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.
--------------------
Note: Tami says she intends to spotlight a new poet each week. Thanks, Tami.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

MAC-D
This has always been one of my favorite poems but more than that I love the pic. You do come up with some fine artwork!

Anonymous said...

As an African American aware of my history, I find this poem too patriotic.

Anonymous said...

I agree...they haven't reached the "feeling ashamed" part

blackwomenblowthetrumpet.blogspot.com said...

Hey there MacDaddy!!

Thank you for sharing this classic!!

Peace, blessings and DUNAMIS!
Lisa

EveNotes said...

Hi MacDaddy, These latest pieces about Jesse Jackson and the poem by Langston Hughes are why I like visiting your blog--its educational and I like reading your views on current issues. The poem by Langston is very timely given the latest issues related to the Presidential elections. Thanks to both you and Tami (whattamisaid).

New Black Woman said...

That was great. You mind if I put this on my blog?

MacDaddy said...

anon1: It took me a while to find this photo-- which is really a photo of a painting-- by Hughes. Thanks for recognizing it.
anon2: I don't see patriotism in this poem. I hear Hughes saying black people are also a part of this grand experiment called America too; and this America will one day see.
Evenotes: Well said.
Newblackwoman: Please do.

Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

yea drop some countee cullen and sterling brown folk

sdg1844 said...

I can never get enough Langston.

rainywalker said...

The New Yorker is sick and has no taste. This is just another sad case of some to portray our next president as something he isn't.

Stella said...

A present for you all: my first favorite poem at 8 years old.

THEME FOR ENGLISH B
By Langston Hughes

The instructor said,

Go home and write
a page tonight.
And let that page come out of you---
Then, it will be true.

I wonder if it's that simple?
I am twenty-two, colored, born in Winston-Salem.
I went to school there, then Durham, then here
to this college on the hill above Harlem.
I am the only colored student in my class.
The steps from the hill lead down into Harlem
through a park, then I cross St. Nicholas,
Eighth Avenue, Seventh, and I come to the Y,
the Harlem Branch Y, where I take the elevator
up to my room, sit down, and write this page:

It's not easy to know what is true for you or me
at twenty-two, my age. But I guess I'm what
I feel and see and hear, Harlem, I hear you:
hear you, hear me---we two---you, me, talk on this page.
(I hear New York too.) Me---who?
Well, I like to eat, sleep, drink, and be in love.
I like to work, read, learn, and understand life.
I like a pipe for a Christmas present,
or records---Bessie, bop, or Bach.
I guess being colored doesn't make me NOT like
the same things other folks like who are other races.
So will my page be colored that I write?
Being me, it will not be white.
But it will be
a part of you, instructor.
You are white---
yet a part of me, as I am a part of you.
That's American.
Sometimes perhaps you don't want to be a part of me.
Nor do I often want to be a part of you.
But we are, that's true!
As I learn from you,
I guess you learn from me---
although you're older---and white---
and somewhat more free.

This is my page for English B.

1951

Anonymous said...

I love that your readers are sharing their own poetry.
cool blog man!
verna