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Anastasia Beaverhausen

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Poem for the Fourth Annual Brigid Poetry Reading [Feb. 2nd, 2009|02:24 pm]
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The Negro Speaks of Rivers

I've known rivers:
I've known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow
of human blood in human veins.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.

I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.
I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went
down to New Orleans, and I've seen its muddy bosom turn
all golden in the sunset.

I've known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

-- Langston Hughes
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: profdana
2009-02-03 12:41 am (UTC)

(Link)

I once tutored a student who was supposed to do a close reading of this poem. When I asked her what she thought Hughes was trying to say, she responded: "Um, like, black people? Are deep? Like rivers?"

I wish I taught math.