Today’s Black History Month Poet: Langston Hughes

Another brilliant poet from history, Langston Hughes crafted such beautiful work. This one evokes, for me, so much of the painfully brutal elements of the African American journey. 

10 thoughts on “Today’s Black History Month Poet: Langston Hughes”

  1. The full poem is important for understanding Langston Hughes as well as honoring his work, so here it is:
    Song For A Dark Girl

    Way Down South in Dixie
    (Break the heart of me)
    They hung my black young lover
    To a cross roads tree.

    Way Down South in Dixie
    (Bruised body high in air)
    I asked the white Lord Jesus
    What was the use of prayer.

    Way Down South in Dixie
    (Break the heart of me)
    Love is a naked shadow
    On a gnarled and naked tree.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome, Carl. But I am not adding to the poem. I simply provided the full poem which matters. The full context matters. Have you never listened to Billie’s “Strange Fruit” before? I think U will find it truly profound. I believe it was a white jewish man who wrote the lyrics… but please don’t quote me on that. I need to fact check that. But it’s her voice and version of the song that seems to both haunt and live on in order to express the horror. Langston Hughes was pointing out the white supremacy he lived thru… not so much his true love… in his poems and your black history NEEDS to reflect that truth. U gotta show the whole poem to speak to it. “White Jesus” is not all inclusive… even if Jesus is Love, right? Talk about Langston Hughes for reals. Give him the credit he id due.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is a sweet thing to say to me Carl. Thanks for embarking on such a “journey.” Thanks for your post and taking the time with me.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Hi Carl… and if it is about his true love, she’s been lynched. That’s what strange fruit is. That’s what tree Langston is talking about. So where is white Jesus in that? Makes the black man and black woman Jesus too. It’s the same hanging. And that’s a profound love song. That’s a profound love poem. But it’s about living thru white supremacy and slavery and segregation and jim crow. Thanks for taking my comments.

        Liked by 1 person

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