“My Favorite Poet”

In early elementary school, somewhere between 3rd-5th grade, I wrote a report on Langston Hughes. I even drew a portrait of him for the title page. Looking back, I have no idea what it was about Hughes that wooed me as a child. Heck, I can’t quite put into words why I’m drawn to his work, now!

I’m usually hesitant to start listing my “favorite” of anything; but if I had a favorite poet, Langston Hughes would be it. Perhaps one thing I admire about him is his courage to explore other areas of literature. But more than anything, I simply love his poems.

Langston Hughes was born on February 1, 1902. In the midst of the big blizzard, I didn’t get a chance to “properly” address Black History Month, so I wanted to take a moment to do so by leaving you with one of my favorite Langston Hughes poems, “I, Too, Sing America.”:

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.

I'll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody'll dare
Say to me,
"Eat in the kitchen,"

They'll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed--

I, too, am America.