Langston Hughes Quotes About America, Life, Dreams

James Mercer Langston Hughes was an American poet, social activist, novelist, playwright, and columnist from Joplin, Missouri. One of the earliest innovators of the then-new literary art form called jazz poetry, Hughes is best known as a leader of the Harlem Renaissance. He famously wrote about the period that “the Negro was in vogue”, which was later paraphrased as “when Harlem was in vogue.” These Langston Hughes quotes will motivate you in life.

Best Langston Hughes Quotes

  1. “I’m so tired of waiting, aren’t you, for the world to become good and beautiful and kind?” ~ Langston Hughes
  2. “The only way to get a thing done is to start to do it, then keep on doing it, and finally you’ll finish it.” ~ Langston Hughes
  3. “Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.” ~ Langston Hughes , Langston Hughes quotes about dreams
  4. “A world I dream where black or white,
    Whatever race you be,
    Will share the bounties of the Earth
    And every man is free.” ~ Langston Hughes
  5. “When a man starts out to build a world, He starts first with himself” ~ Langston Hughes

  6. “I, too, sing America. I am the darker brother. They send me to eat in the kitchen When company comes, But I laugh And eat well, And grow strong. Tomorrow, I’ll be at the table When company comes. Nobody’ll dare Say to me, “Eat in the kitchen,” Then. Besides, They’ll see how beautiful I am And be ashamed– I, too, am America.” ~ Langston Hughes
  7. “I tire so of hearing people say, Let things take their course. Tomorrow is another day. I do not need my freedom when I’m dead. I cannot live on tomorrow’s bread.” ~ Langston Hughes
  8. “Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed –
    Let it be that great strong land of love
    Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
    That any man be crushed by one above.” ~ Langston Hughes , Langston Hughes quotes about America
  9. “I have discovered in life that there are ways of getting almost anywhere you want to go, if you really want to go.” ~ Langston Hughes
  10. “Negroes – Sweet and docile, Meek, humble, and kind: Beware the day – They change their mind.” ~ Langston Hughes
  11. “What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun? … Or does it explode?” ~ Langston Hughes

  12. “Let America be America, where equality is in the air we breathe.” ~ Langston Hughes
  13. “Reach Up Your Hand… and take a star.” ~ Langston Hughes
  14. “Humor is laughing at what you haven’t got when you ought to have it … what you wish in your secret heart were not funny, but it is, and you must laugh. Humor is your own unconscious therapy. Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air, and you.” ~ Langston Hughes
  15. “Good morning, Revolution: You’re the very best friend I ever had. We gonna pal around together from now on” ~ Langston Hughes
  16. “That Justice is a blind goddess
    Is a thing to which we black are wise:
    Her bandage hides two festering sores
    That once perhaps were eyes.” ~ Langston Hughes
  17. “An artist must be free to choose what he does, certainly, but he must also never be afraid to do what he might choose.” ~ Langston Hughes
  18. “Blues had the pulse beat of the people who keep on going.” ~ Langston Hughes

  19. “Road’s in front o’ me, Nothin’ to do but walk.” ~ Langston Hughes
  20. “LIBERTY! FREEDOM! DEMOCRACY! True anyhow no matter how many Liars use those words.” ~ Langston Hughes
  21. “When poems stop talking about the moon and begin to mention poverty, trade unions, color, color lines, and colonies, somebody tells the police.” ~ Langston Hughes
  22. “Well, son, I’ll tell you: Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair. It’s had tacks in it, And splinters, And boards torn up, And places with no carpet on the floor — Bare. But all the time I’se been a-climbin’ on, And reachin’ landin’s, And turnin’ corners, And sometimes goin’ in the dark Where there ain’t been no light. So boy, don’t you turn back. Don’t you set down on the steps ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard. Don’t you fall now — For I’se still goin’, honey, I’se still climbin’, And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.” ~ Langston Hughes
  23. “A dream deferred is a dream denied.” ~ Langston Hughes

  24. “Well, I like to eat, sleep, drink, and be in love. I like to work, read, learn, and understand life.” ~ Langston Hughes
  25. “If the government can set aside some spot for an elk to be an elk without being bothered, or a buffalo to be a buffalo without being shot down, there ought to be someplace where a Negro can be a Negro without being Jim Crowed.” ~ Langston Hughes
  26. “Life is an egg you have to be patient and careful with it or it will break.” ~ Langston Hughes , Langston Hughes quotes about life
  27. “Teach us all to do right, Lord, please, and to get along together with that atom bomb on this earth because I do not want it to fall on me-nor Thee-nor anybody living. Amen!” ~ Langston Hughes
  28. “Because my mouth Is wide with laughter And my throat Is deep with song, You do not think I suffer after I have held my pain So long? Because my mouth Is wide with laughter You do not hear My inner cry? Because my feet Are gay with dancing You do not know I die?” ~ Langston Hughes
  29. “O, let my land be a land where Liberty Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath, But opportunity is real, and life is free, Equality is in the air we breathe.” ~ Langston Hughes
  30. “When peoples care for you and cry for you, they can straighten out your soul.” ~ Langston Hughes

  31. “Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air, and you.” ~ Langston Hughes
  32. “Gather quickly
    Out of darkness
    All the songs you know
    And throw them at the sun
    Before they melt
    Like snow.” ~ Langston Hughes
  33. “Folks, I’m telling you, birthing is hard and dying is mean- so get yourself a little loving in between.” ~ Langston Hughes
  34. “I dream a world… where wretchedness will hang its head And joy, like a pearl, attends the needs of all mankind. Of such I dream, my world!” ~ Langston Hughes
  35. “I look at my own body
    With eyes no longer blind-
    And I see that my own hands can make
    The world that’s in my mind.” ~ Langston Hughes
  36. “I stay cool, and dig all jive, That’s the way I stay alive. My motto, as I live and learn, is Dig and be dug In return.” ~ Langston Hughes
  37. “I stuck my head out the window this morning and spring kissed me bang in the face.” ~ Langston Hughes

  38. “There is no color line in death. I swear to the lord I still can’t see Why Democracy means Everybody but me. O, yes, I say it plain, America never was America to me, And yet I swear this oath – America will be! I am the American heartbreak- The rock on which Freedom Stumped its toe.” ~ Langston Hughes
  39. “America never was America to me And yet I swear this oath – America will be!” ~ Langston Hughes
  40. “I am the American heartbreak- The rock on which Freedom Stumped its toe.” ~ Langston Hughes
  41. “Life is a system of half-truths and lies, Opportunistic, convenient evasion.” ~ Langston Hughes
  42. “Americans of good-will, the nice decent church people, the well-meaning liberals, the good-hearted souls who themselves wouldn’t lynch anyone, must begin to realize that they have to be more than passively good-hearted, more than church-going Christian, and much more than word-of-mouth in the liberalism.” ~ Langston Hughes
  43. “Go home and write / a page tonight. / And let that page come out of you – / Then, it will be true.” ~ Langston Hughes
  44. “I wish the rent was heaven sent.” ~ Langston Hughes

  45. “Gather out of star-dust, Earth-dust, Cloud-dust, Storm-dust, And splinters of hail, One handful of dream-dust, Not for sale.” ~ Langston Hughes
  46. “Democracy will not come Today, this year Nor ever Through compromise and fear.” ~ Langston Hughes
  47. “Looks like what drives me crazy Don’t have no effect on you– But I’m gonna keep on at it Till it drives you crazy, too.” ~ Langston Hughes
  48. “What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun? Or fester like a sore– And then run? Does it stink like rotten meat? Or crust and sugar over– like a syrupy sweet? Maybe it just sags like a heavy load. Or does it explode?” ~ Langston Hughes
  49. “My soul has grown deep like the rivers.” ~ Langston Hughes
  50. “I swear to the Lord, I still can’t see, why Democracy means, everybody but me.” ~ Langston Hughes
  51. “Let America be America again. Let it be the dream it used to be.” ~ Langston Hughes

  52. “Oh, God of Dust and Rainbows, Help us to see That without the dust the rainbow Would not be.” ~ Langston Hughes
  53. “Gather up In the arms of your love—Those who expect No love from above.” ~ Langston Hughes
  54. “Negro blood is sure powerful because just one drop of black blood makes a colored man. One drop–you are a Negro! . . . Black is powerful.” ~ Langston Hughes
  55. “Life is a big sea full of many fish. I let down my nets and pulled. I’m still pulling.” ~ Langston Hughes
  56. “Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death, The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies, We, the people, must redeem The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers. The mountains and the endless plain– All, all the stretch of these great green states– And make America again!” ~ Langston Hughes
  57. Life is for the living. Death is for the dead. Let life be like music. And death a note unsaid.” ~ Langston Hughes
  58. “We build our temples for tomorrow, strong as we know-how, and we stand on top of the mountain, free within ourselves.” ~ Langston Hughes
  59. “Keep your hand on the plow. Hold on.” ~ Langston Hughes

  60. “Out of love, No regrets– Though the goodness Be wasted forever. Out of love, No regrets– Though the return Be never.” ~ Langston Hughes
  61. “There is no color line in art.” ~ Langston Hughes
  62. Money and art are far apart.” ~ Langston Hughes
  63. “It has seemed to me that most people are generally good, in every race and in every country where I have been.” ~ Langston Hughes
  64. “I loved my friend He went away from me There’s nothing more to say The poem ends, Soft as it began- I loved my friend.” ~ Langston Hughes
  65. “Politics can be the graveyard of the poet. And only poetry can be his resurrection.” ~ Langston Hughes

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