The Blues

Langston Hughes is one of my favorite poets. He can sing the blues without using a single note. His words sway across the page like the music itself.
Today’s poem escorts the melancholy of the blues onto the page.

The Weary Blues
Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,
Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon,

I heard a Negro play
Down on Lenox Avenue the other night
By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light
         He did a lazy sway . . .
         He did a lazy sway . . .
To the tune o’ those Weary Blues…
When I read this poem, I feel like I am sitting at a table in the bar listening to this man’s lament. I feel the beat and smell the smoke.  There are little or no words spoken between those left at the tables.  It’s too late for that.  The night is slipping into the early morning and regrets fill the air.
I wonder, did the music give definition to the word – blue?  How could a color so calm as the morning sky or vibrant as the rolling sea give birth to such heartbreak?
The deep navy that streaks across our flag is a noble blue. How much sadness, as well as joy and triumph, are held within those borders?
Happy Independence Day everyone.
The Weary Blues by Langston Hughes can be read in it’s entirety at  Click here:

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