To fling my arms wideIn some place of the sun,To whirl and to danceTill the white day is done.Then rest at cool eveningBeneath a tall treeWhile night comes on gently, Dark like me—That is my dream!

To fling my arms wideIn the confront of the sun,Dance! Whirl! Whirl!Till the quick day is done.Rest at pale evening . . .A tall, slim tree . . .Night coming tenderly Black choose me.

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A poet, novelist, fiction writer, and playwright, Langston Hughes is well-known for his insightful, vivid portrayals of black life in America from the twenties with the sixties and also was essential in shaping the artistic contributions of the Harlem Renaissance.

Hold fast to dreams For if dreams dieLife is a broken-winged birdThat cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreamsFor once desires goLife is a barren fieldFrozen through snow.

Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,Rocking ago and also forth to a mellow croon, I heard a Negro play.Dvery own on Lenox Avenue the other nightBy the pale dull pallor of an old gas light He did a lazy persuade . . . He did a lazy guide . . .To the tune o" those Weary Blues.With his ebony hands on each cream color keyHe made that poor piano moan through melody. O Blues!Swaying to and also fro on his rickety stoolHe played that sad raggy tune prefer a musical fool. Sweet Blues!Coming from a black man"s soul. O Blues!In a deep song voice via a melancholy toneI heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan— "Ain"t gained nobody in all this civilization, Ain"t gained nobody yet 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 couple of chords then he sang some more— "I obtained 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 passed away."And much into the night he crooned that tune.The stars went out and also so did the moon.The singer quit playing and went to bedWhile the Weary Blues echoed via his head.He slept favor a rock or a male that"s dead.

I went down to the river,I collection dvery own on the bank.I tried to think however couldn"t,So I jumped in and also sank.

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I came up when and hollered!I came up twice and cried!If that water hadn"t a-been so coldI might"ve sunk and died.

But it was Cold in that water! It was cold!

I took the elevatorSixteen floors over the ground.I thought about my babyAnd believed I would jump dvery own.

I stood tbelow and I hollered!I stood there and also I cried!If it hadn"t a-been so highI might"ve jumped and also passed away.

But it was High up there! It was high!

So given that I"m still right here livin",I guess I will live on.I could"ve passed away for love—But for livin" I was born

Though you might hear me holler,And you might view me cry—I"ll be dogged, sweet baby,If you gonna check out me die.

Life is fine! Fine as wine! Life is fine!

Langston Hughes


Related Poems

Evening Song

Full moon rising on the waters of my heart, Lakes and also moon and fires, Cloine tires,Holding her lips acomponent. 

Promises of stimber leaving shore to cdamage the moon, Miracle made vesper-keeps, Cloine sleeps, And I’ll be sleeping soon. 

Cloine, curled favor the sleepy waters wright here the  moon-waves start, Radiant, resplendently she gleams, Cloine desires, Lips pressed versus my heart. 

The dreams of the dreamer Are life-drops that passThe break in the heart To the soul’s hour-glass.

The songs of the singer Are tones that repeatThe cry of the heart ‘Till it ceases to beat.

“O Blood of the River of songs,O songs of the River of Blood,” Let me lie dvery own. Let my wordsLie sound in the mouths of menRepeating invocations pure And perfect as a moanThat mounts in the mouth of Bessie Smith.Blues for the angels kicked out Of heaven. Blues for the angelsWho miss out on them still. BluesFor my civilization and what water They know. O weary drinkersDrinking from the bloody river,Why go to heaven via Harlem So close? Why sing of riversWith fathers of our very own to miss?I remember mine and also taste a stain Like blood coursing the bodyOf a male chased by a mob. I writeHis running, his sweat: below, He climbs a poplar for the skies,But it is only sky. The river?Follow me. You’ll see. We tried To fly and learned we couldn’tSwim. Dear singing river fullOf my blood, are we as loud under Water? Is it blood that bindsBrothers? Or is it the MississippiRunning via the fattest vein Of America? When I say house,I intend I wanted to write someLines. I wanted to hear the blues, But here I am swimming in the riverAgain. What flows via the fatVeins of a drowned body? What America have the right to a body callHome? When I say Congo, I meanBlood. When I say Nile, I suppose blood. When I say Euphprices, I expect,If just you kbrand-new what bloodWe have in prevalent. So much, In Louisiana, they speak to a guy prefer meRed. And red was also darkFor my daddy. And my daddy was Too dark for America. He ranLike a man from my motherAnd me. And my mother’s sobs Are the songs of Bessie SmithWho wears more feathers thanDeath. O the death my civilization refuse To die. When I was 18, I wrote downThe river though I couldn’t winA race, climbed a tree that winter, then Fell, level on my wet, red confront. LineAfter line, I review all the moment,But “tbelow was nothing I could carry out About race.”