African American Poetry (1870-1926): A Digital AnthologyMain MenuFull Text Collection: Books Published by African American Poets, 1870-1926Author Profiles: Bios and Full Text CollectionsThe Beginnings of the Harlem Renaissance: Overview and Timeline of Key EventsBlack Poetry Before the Harlem Renaissance: Overview and TimelineAfrican American Poetry: A Story Of MagazinesAfrican American Poetry: Anthologies of the 1920sFurther Reading / Works CitedAmardeep Singhc185e79df2fca428277052b90841c4aba30044e1
See Rampersad's "Introduction" to "The Collected Works of Langston Hughes, Volume 1" (University of Missouri Press, 2001)
Critics such as Arnold Rampersad have particularly singled out Hughes' innovative embrace of concepts borrowed from jazz and blues music as the defining innovation of this collection. The blues in particular would be central to Hughes' second published book of poems, Fine Clothes to the Jew (1928). Here, Hughes' interest in the collection seems equally divided between the blues theme and concepts and experiences closer to Jazz (along those lines, see "Jazzonia,""Negro Dancers,""To Midnight Nan at Leroys" and "The Cat and the Saxophone," to name just a few)
Langston Hughes first began publishing his poetry in The Crisis in June 1921; his first poem published there, fittingly, was "The Negro Speaks of Rivers," one of his most famous and enduring works. However, Hughes also published many other poems that would appear in The Weary Blues in magazines like Opportunity and Survey Graphic in the years leading up to the publication of his first book. An archive of The Crisis up to 1922 can be found at the Modernist Journals Project.
This text was produced using the scanned version of the first edition of the book available at Google Books. For this digital edition, I extracted a plain text version, and then formatted and tagged the poems in the Table of Contents below. The plain text version can be found here.
--Amardeep Singh, Lehigh University. January 2022 --------------------
The Weary Blues by Langston Hughes
With an Introduction by Carl Van Vechten
New York: Alfred A. Knopf 1926
--------------------- Dedication: "To my mother" --------------------- "I wish to thank the editors of The Crisis, Opportunity, Survey Graphic, Vanity Fair, The World Tomorrow and The Amsterdam News for having published some of the poems in this book."