OTR Celebrates Langston Hughes


The Sailor

February is the month that Canadians celebrate Black History.   One of my favourite poets is Langston Hughes, who was first acknowledged as a significant literary figure in the 1920’s, during the Harlem Renaissance period. He was only in his twenties.  His wrote about difficult times, yet his was a voice of profound optimism and unwavering character.  This poem is universal.  All mothers want their sons to know that they are “still climbin.”

Mother to Son

By Langston Hughes

Well, son, I’ll tell you:

Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

It’s had tacks in it,

And splinters,

And boards torn up,

And places with no carpet on the floor—


But all the time

I’se been a-climbin’ on,

And reachin’ landin’s,

And turnin’ corners,

And sometimes goin’ in the dark

Where there ain’t been no light.

So boy, don’t you turn back.

Don’t you set down on the steps

’Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.

Don’t you fall now—

For I’se still goin’, honey,

I’se still climbin’,

And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.


Published by Rebecca Budd

Blogger, Visual Storyteller, Podcaster, Traveler and Life-long Learner

8 thoughts on “OTR Celebrates Langston Hughes

  1. Dear Clanmother,
    thank you very much for introducing me to Langston Hughes. I hadn`t heard of him before, that was a mistake. A great poem! Interesting this shortened language.
    Have a great week


    1. And thank you for making my day brilliant. Your presence and comments are much appreciated. I am enjoying our conversation because you have introduced me to new ideas, art and literature. To me, that is what life is all about – sharing, learning, evolving…


      1. Dear Clanmother,
        thank you very much 🙂 You inspire me as well and many thanks for that! I am amazed how little knowledge I have got about Canadian authors although I was living in Canda for years. But in those times the dominant writer was Kerouac. Everybody was reading “On the Road” and his other novels, well, that was hippie time 😉
        Thank you for your inspiring blogs. Have a great day.
        Greetings from the sunny coast of North Norfolk


      2. Dear Klausbernd, You have just given me another book to put on my list to read for 2013. I have never read “On the Road!” But I did live through the hippie days at the very end. Long hair, granny glasses and floppy hats! By the way, Canada was lucky to have you!

        “Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.”
        ― Jack Kerouac, On the Road


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