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What happens to a dream deferred doesn't dry up like a raisin enough on our structure like a door and then Ron does it stink like rotten meat. Our route in sugar over like a syrupy sweet and then he had just like a heavy load or doubt it but all lacked was the voice of Langston Hughes who wrote about Negro life with warmth and humor. He was reading his poetry and talking about his life and work at Columbia University in the spring of 1964 when our microphone caught him. Monday night May 22nd Mr. Hughes died in his honor. Riverside radio w r b r in New York presents in memory of Langston Hughes. A blending of memories tributes and his own words. Here he is again as he spoke to students at Columbia University on New York's Morningside Heights at the edge of Harlem in 1964.
My father was a lawyer my father was an American Negro but he didn't like the United States very much. God I'm actually going to make it that way in the world. And he didn't like Negril very much. He would have felt by me at that time that we were all very powerful and simple minded and we didn't fight very hard for. Our rights and so he went away to to make it own career I think perhaps if he were here now he would. And Myra very much to me both white and they are trying to make a way for real democracy in our country. And he wanted me to study in Switzerland where he said I can learn three languages at once. I had never seen Harlem you know I grew up on the Middle West Kandice and live there and Chicago then Mexico City and so I didn't want to go through it
and study it in one and three languages at once. Why did not all of. I finally persuaded him to allow me to come to Columbia at any rate I met up Cajun for hardy har. And as I recall it there was no reference to race on the applications but when I got here I didn't want to let me and I'd be hot in the Never had a negro. Living in a dormitory on the Columbia campus before. Well this was way back in 1921 and they have instead of things changed greatly at least in the dormitory. A little bit of doing from my getting into the hot and I found myself the only. African the sound there. There were some oriental tunes but that's always been one of the public thanks to American exile that almost anybody else's Collett if they're
not American can live in how to harden things you know. Why did it go against the other thing if you're the Americans you know. But they get it and they still do of course as we all know in many areas the reference point to be published was not a very serious point. Let me very juvenile point was about a boy who got all dressed up and put on death clubs and found I didn't have any girlfriend to go see so this is what he chef. I had my clothes clean just like new. I put them on but I still feel blue. I bought a new hat. Sure it's fine. But I wish I had back that old gal of mine. I got new shoes that over at my feet but I ain't got nobody to call me through. Sad. I hundreds of poems plays short stories newspaper columns novels translations anthologies radio and television scripts an
opera librettos after that first poem Langston Hughes died at the age of 65. Among the many individuals and organizations paying homage to his memory was the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People whose stories Mr Hughes told in the book fight for freedom. Speaking for the Association Dr. John Morse L.. Right person right. Right now I have a theory. And our membership not only being able to arrange for our WRP Aradia. Sure I know which appeared in today's New York Times. Officers and members of the national public people expressed profound sorrow upon the passing of a man who in his
own remarkable was a crusader for freedom for millions of people extend heart something as a family. And by Kevin Kaplan President Steven Spotswood chairman of the board of directors. And right welcome executive director. That was Dr. John yourself speaking to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Langston Hughes was a long time columnist with The New York Post The Post printed its tribute to Hughes on its editorial page it was read by James Wexler editor of the page. A few weeks ago on the publication of best stories by negro writers the 28 book Langston Hughes had written or edited. A reviewer for the Houston Press said of him quote someday when they get around to striking off medals for negroes who have lived in 20th century America with gallantry and distinction. If there is any justice the
first medal should go to Langston Hughes. End of quote. He didn't get it. He died Monday night. But there is no reason why survivors should not heed the reviewer's suggestion that his stories be included in junior and senior high school literature texts so white and Negro students alike will appreciate. As Langston Hughes says in his own introduction. Quote How very complex and exciting is the milieu in which black folk lived in America. As a poet dramatist lyricist and perhaps most of all as a humorist James Langston Hughes earned special distinction for himself not simply in literature a text but in the literature of this nation. He was a man deeply involved in what Justice Holmes called the actions and passions of his time. He never lost his capacity for anger and the gift of laughter. The tribute from the New York Post was read by James Wexler editor of the
editorial page. Speaking from his office in Washington Senator Edward Brooke offered this tribute to the late poet playwright poet writer. More than 40. I'm going to make it right. OK American Idiot. I would forget it ever known right. And to be a point of it for a man's autobiography is a collaborative effort on several apre. Every creator of that widely known general character try to pull rank for him to get it at a profit. The most famous philosopher of the people with the negro point of view have a right to do it writing anywhere near right here are my own and committed people he was writing about and felt with great
sensitivity that car and everybody living in our store I mean I mean way they are it. All who have died in right here. So we're all Americans. Robin Wright Senator Edward Brook The senator spoke about simple the best known character created by Langston Hughes. Here's the author reading simple praise a prayer. Later in the week on a hot night when I pass through this block symbol was sitting on his land that he's meeting a newspaper by street light. When he saw me coming he threw the paper down. Good evening I said. Good enough and he answered it's too hot to be any good evenin. Besides this paper's full nothing but Adam bombs and bad news. Wars and rumors of wars airplane crashes murders
fightings wife weapons and killings all the way from the Balkans right here to Brooklyn to New York. You know one thing if I was a praying man I would pray a prayer for this world right now. What kind of prayer would you pray for and I ask. I would pray I don't want to have no more wars prayer and would go like this Lord. I would say I would ask him Lord kindly please take the blood off of my hands and off of my brother's hands and make us shake hands clean and not be afraid neither. You know them have no knives behind our backs Lord. Nor up our sleeves. No bombs piled out John there in the desert. Let's forget about bygones too many men's and women's adad the fault is mine and theirs too I reckon. So teach us all to do
right Lord pleads. And to get along without him bomb on this earth because I do not want that bomb to fall on me nor the nor anybody Levon a man. Simple praise or prayer read by Langston Hughes. A month before his death he was attended a dinner given by the Poetry Society of America in honor of the 80th birthday of Marian Moore when he was called upon to speak he said. I had no idea that I would have the pleasure and I honor of paying tribute to that wonderful and lovely lady and day jamming and you know that all right. She was very kindly the chairman of my own program to deny me of them a few months ago and thank you. I said something maybe which some people thought was not true but I didn't really think it was true. And because I think she's universal and
wonderful and belongs to everybody I mean thank her for her to be to me. I I want to give my gratitude to the foremost Nigro going on point in America. I reached her home and going to church religion after Hughes's death. Miss Moore said. Problem for me. Well all right grab her right here and tell. I'm Carol and I directed production Black Nativity and I can always remember one as a playwright who brought gospel music to the theater and who made Gospel Music not only a way of celebrating religion but an art
form. Growing up I was fed and inspired by his poetry and immaturity. I found that he came not only to me but countless To me go back and try to do it and tried to intimidate me. Q And it turned out to be just a little better than we ever dreamed possible. The full weight in this world and I drank. And we should feel it for All right. Well that was been it Carol who directed he was is Black Nativity the Pulitzer Prize winning poet Wendell and Brooks was befriended and helped by Hughes when she was beginning her own career speaking by telephone from her home in Chicago. Miss Brooks read a poem she wrote some years ago as her tribute to her friend's memory.
And you know a lot of the in that Oval Office is the part that I wrote to have a girl feel like self and here is Larry glory is south of there are a threat to the right of being free as a lowery Fromm be repeating all fear the killer. Here's how horticulture in the eye of the vulture and her profession and the compress in blood and sudden death and the breath of the Holocaust held but perhaps it had like for a while the rats were the exotic.
Lot was poet Gwendolyn Brooks Langston Hughes his poems were translated into German French Spanish Russian and yet ish and Czech. Many of them have been set to music. Among the composers who found inspiration in his words is another American sig meister. In 1966 his song cycle madam to you on text by Hughes was given its first performance as part of the annual music in our time concerts in New York. The composer was at the piano and the soprano was Adele Addison Lee.
In the room with the in the room. Oh. My. God what. Was. It was me.
The. Thing. Was. The.
A. God.
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In memoriam: Langston Hughes
Part one
Producing Organization
WRVR (Radio station: New York, N.Y.)
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program presents the first part of a tribute to poet Langston Hughes.
Series Description
A series about the noted American poet who died May 22, 1967. It features him reading his poetry at Columbia University during Spring 1964.
Asset type
Media type
Producing Organization: WRVR (Radio station: New York, N.Y.)
Speaker: Hughes, Langston, 1902-1967
Speaker: Brooke, Edward W. (Edward William), 1919-2015
Speaker: Morsell, John A.
Speaker: Wechsler, James A. (James Arthur), 1915-1983
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: cpb-aacip-941f8324c12 (Filename)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:23
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Chicago: “In memoriam: Langston Hughes; Part one,” 1967-06-19, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 12, 2022,
MLA: “In memoriam: Langston Hughes; Part one.” 1967-06-19. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 12, 2022. <>.
APA: In memoriam: Langston Hughes; Part one. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from