Poetry Readings, Part 3

In Wednesday’s class, we continued our poetry readings. At last, I got up in front of the class and read my poem, “The Weary Blues,” by Langston Hughes. When I first encountered the poem and read it to myself, I really was able to experience the emotions of the poem. I could picture the musician playing his weary blues, playing his piano with incredible passion behind every note. I was able to understand how the pianist felt, and I could even get a mental image of how he looked and acted while playing. “The Old Guitarist” by Picasso immediately came to my mind when thinking about this. I pictured the pianist draped over his piano, making tired, weary swaying motions.

Professor Kahan helped me read the poem how it was meant to be read. Since the poem has 3 different voices that are portrayed, it must be read in 3 separate tones. Langston Hughes speaks his own thoughts as he observes the musician, then also sings lines like “Sweet Blues” and “Oh Blues” to make the poem flow like a blues song. When the musician sings, Hughes inserts the lyrics so that the song is contained in the poem, and the entire poem flows like the song that is being heard by Hughes.