Poetry Friday is hosted by Liz Steinglass today!
On Thursday, I had the honor and pleasure of introducing my sixth graders to the poems of Langston Hughes. We investigated the Harlem Renaissance, read a wonderful picture book about his early life:
listened to Langston tell of what inspired his poem The Negro Speaks of Rivers, and then recite it, as only he could:
Once we had a feel for Langston and the world he inhabited, we read a few of his most famous poems together. My kids were quiet after each reading; their brows furrowed, they thought deeply about what Langston had been trying to say about his world when he wrote those poems…and what we can bring of Langston to our world today: being true to the idea of democracy, holding on to dreams, the yearning for freedom now. Here are two we loved:
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.