Scientists have exposed the fallacy of using race as a human classification. Still, the metaphor of color remains a strong societal force. Prejudice requires no reason—only willingness to believe, despite evidence. Thus, the metaphor of color continues to influence human relationships.
Langston Hughes' speaker in "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" displays his message in five versagraphic movements, thematically exploring his soul experience with a "cosmic voice," which includes and unites all of humanity.
The speaker of a poem is seldom the poet. A poem is a dramatization similar to a play. The speaker is a created character, crafted by the poet to speak the message of the poem. Even when a poet shares sentiment with the speaker, they should be considered separate entities.
Hughes' "Theme for English B" dramatizes the brainstorming session of a speaker who is a non-traditional college student. He has been given the assignment to write a paper about himself that is true. He muses on how to go about producing a page that the instructor will understand.
Hoyt W. Fuller, critic, editor, and founder of the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC), has pointed out that Langston Hughes possessed a "deceptive and profound simplicity." Fuller insists that understanding these qualities in Hughes is key to understanding and appreciating his poetry.
James Weldon Johnson penned the poem "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing" in 1900 to celebrate the birthday anniversary of the great emancipator, President Abraham Lincoln.
A true "Renaissance man," James Weldon Johnson wrote some the best spiritual poems and songs in the American literary canon. He also held positions as attorney, diplomat, professor, and activist in a political party, fighting for the civil rights of black Americans.
In the 18th century, Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) made an etymological error that poets, scholars, critics, and editors even today continue to perpetuate. Johnson incorrectly surmised that "rime" was a derivative of "rythmos"; thus, he altered the spelling from "rime" to "rhyme."
This glossary of literary devices features definitions of terms used in my commentaries on poems. Many have been employed for centuries, but I have also coined a number of terms such as "versagraph," conflating "verse paragraph," and "scatter rime," an innovative rime scheme.
In D. H. Lawrence's "Afternoon in School: The Last Lesson," an educator is dramatizing the lackluster performance of the students in the classroom. The teacher's strength is being sapped by many vain attempts to teach pupils who refuse to learn.
The speaker in Walter de la Mare’s “Silver" personifies the moon as a lady out walking at night in silver slippers, showering the landscape and everything in it with the color of silver. The silvering of the night moon reveals a special style of beauty; while sunlight is gold, moonlight is silver.
Dickinson lived a solitary life that in many ways paralleled that of a religious monastic. She passed her life in quiet contemplation, becoming addicted to creating little dramas resulting in her fascicles of 1775 poems, with subject matter ranging from flowers to the concept of immortality.
For Emily Dickinson, the seasons offered ample opportunities for verse creation, and her love for all of the seasons is quite evident in her poems. However, her poetic dramas become especially deep and profound in her winter poems.