Langston Hughes

February 1, 1902 - May 22, 1967

When he was a young child, his parents divorced, and his father moved to Mexico. Until he was thirteen, he was raised by his grandmother. Before the family eventually settled in Cleveland, Ohio, he moved to Lincoln, Illinois, to live with his mother and her husband. Hughes began writing poetry in Lincoln. Followed by a year at Columbia University in New York City, after graduating high school, he spent a year in Mexico.Three years later, he finished college education at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania.

"The Weary Blues" was his first book of poetry published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1926. For literature, in 1930, his first novel, "Not Without Laughter," won the Harmon gold medal. As well as poetry, he wrote novels, short stories  and plays. In shaping the artistic contributions of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s, his life and work were enormously important. Hughes wrote eleven plays and countless works of prose, in addition to leaving us a large body of poetic work. In New York City, Langston Hughes died of complications from prostate cancer in May 22, 1967.

"As I Grew Older"
by: Langston hughes

"It was a long time ago.

I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright like a sun—
My dream.
And then the wall rose,
Rose slowly,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky—
The wall.
I am black.
I lie down in the shadow.
No longer the light of my dream before me,
Above me.
Only the thick wall.
Only the shadow.
My hands!
My dark hands!
Break through the wall!
Find my dream!
Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night,
To break this shadow
Into a thousand lights of sun,
Into a thousand whirling dreams
Of sun!"