Discovering Your Destiny. Langston Hughes. 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.
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I, too, sing America
I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchenWhen company comes,But I laugh,And eat well,And grow strong.
Tomorrow,I'll sit at the tableWhen company comes.Nobody'll dareSay to me,"Eat in the kitchen,"Then.
Besides,They'll see how beautiful I amAnd be ashamed,--
I, too, am America.
Still I Rise
You may write me down in historyWith your bitter, twisted lies,You may trod me in the very dirtBut still, like dust, I'll rise.Does my sassiness upset you?Why are you beset with gloom?'Cause I walk like I've got oil wellsPumping in my living room.Just like moons and like suns,With the certainty of tides,Just like hopes springing high,Still I'll rise.Did you want to see me broken?Bowed head and lowered eyes?Shoulders falling down like teardrops.Weakened by my soulful cries.Does my haughtiness offend you?Don't you take it awful hard'Cause I laugh like I've got gold minesDiggin' in my own back yard.You may shoot me with your words,You may cut me with your eyes,You may kill me with your hatefulness,But still, like air, I'll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?Does it come as a surpriseThat I dance like I've got diamondsAt the meeting of my thighs?Out of the huts of history's shameI riseUp from a past that's rooted in painI riseI'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.Leaving behind nights of terror and fearI riseInto a daybreak that's wondrously clearI riseBringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,I am the dream and the hope of the slave.I riseI riseI rise.
Nature, Gentlest Mother
As a child, they could not keep me from wells And old pumps with buckets and windlasses. I loved the dark drop, the trapped sky, the smells Of waterweed, fungus and dank moss. One, in a brickyard, with a rotted board top. I savoured the rich crash when a bucket Plummeted down at the end of a rope. So deep you saw no reflection in it. A shallow one under a dry stone ditch Fructified like any aquarium. When you dragged out long roots from the soft mulch A white face hovered over the bottom. Others had echoes, gave back your own call With a clean new music in it. And one Was scaresome, for there, out of ferns and tall Foxgloves, a rat slapped across my reflection. Now, to pry into roots, to finger slime, To stare, big-eyed Narcissus, into some spring Is beneath all adult dignity. I rhyme To see myself, to set the darkness echoing.
They are night shadowsviolating borders;fingers curled through chain-link fences,hiding from infra-red eyes,dodging 30-30 bullets.They leave familiar smells,warmth and soundsas ancientas the trampled stones.Running to America.There is a womanin her finestborder-crossing wear:A purple blouse froman older sister, a pair of wornshoes from a church bazaar.A tattered coat from a former lover.There is a childdressed in black.Fear sparkling fromdark Indians eyes;clinging toa beheaded Barbie doll.And the men,some hardened, quiet.Others young and loud.You see something like thisin prisons.Soon they will crosson their bellies; kissingblack earth.Running to America.Strange voiceswhisper behind garbage cans,beneath freeway passes,next to broken bottles.The spatter of words,textured and multi-colored,invoke demons.They must run to America.
Their skin,color of earth,is a brandfor all the great ranchers,for the killing floorson Soto Street,and as slaughterfor the garment row.Still they come.A hungry peoplehave no country.Their tearsare the greaseof the bobbing machinesthat rip into cloththat makes clothesthat keep you warm.They have enduredthe sun's strangehold,el corrito,foundry heatsand dark cavesof mineshungry for men.Still they come,wandering bravelythrough the thicknessof this strange land'smaddening ambivalance.Their cries are singedwith fires of hope.Their babies are bornwith a lionin their hearts.Who can confine them?Who can tell themwhich lines never to cross?For the green rivers,for their looted gold,escaping the blood of a landthat threatens to drown them,they have come,running to America.
In the event of my Demise when my heart can beat no more I Hope I Die For A Principle or A Belief that I had Lived 4
I will die Before My Time Because I feel the shadow's Depth so much I wanted 2 accomplish before I reached my Death I have come 2 grips with the possibility and wiped the last tear from My eyes I Loved All who were Positive In the event of my Demise
In the Event of My Demise