Friday, July 6, 2012

25 Poems We've Already Read

In the spirit of and slight divergence from a list of 50 Books That Every African American Should Read that I recently came across online, I started thinking about 25 poems that many of the students in my courses have already read by the time they take my class or at least by the time we've completed a semester together.  

25 Poems
• “The Venus Hottentot” By Elizabeth Alexander
• "Digging Max (At Seventy Five, All the Way Live!)" By Amiri Baraka
• "Dope" By Amiri Baraka
• "In the Funk World" By Amiri Baraka
• "kitchenette building" By Gwendolyn Brooks
• "a song in the front yard" By Gwendolyn Brooks
• "We Real Cool" By Gwendolyn Brooks
• "wishes for sons" By Lucille Clifton
• "won't you celebrate with me" By Lucille Clifton 
• "We Wear the Mask" By Paul Laurence Dunbar
• "Ego Tripping (there may be a reason why)" By Nikki Giovanni
• "Bury Me in a Free Land" By Frances E. W. Harper
• "Frederick Douglass" By Robert Hayden
• "Those Winter Sundays" By Robert Hayden
• "I, Too" By Langston Hughes
• "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" By Langston Hughes
• "The Weary Blues"  By Langston Hughes
• "Sonnet to a Negro in Harlem" By Helene Johnson
• "If We Must Die" By Claude McKay
• "For My People" By Margaret Walker
• "Molly Means"  By Margaret Walker
• "Kissie Lee"  By Margaret Walker
• "On Being Brought From Africa to America" By Phillis Wheatley
• "Black Cat Blues" By Kevin Young
• "Bereavement" By Kevin Young


Unknown said...

I don't see Sanchez on this list! lol...just kidding...I had to do the infamous "someone's missing"!

H. Rambsy said...

Ha. It's true.

Somehow, folks know of Sonia Sanchez, but they have a harder time pinpointing specific poems by her. There are others like that as well.