Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Morning Poetry

Richmond Leake, 53
Newstand Dealer

Teachers did not listen
When I was young
They had things to tell
Lessons to teach and
Papers to grade
So I just shut up

I married young but
She was too busy to
Hear me, what with
Her planning for a
Better life, for the future
And things she had to get done

The white man I
Worked for had all
He could do to make money and
Making sure I wasn't
Sometimes, though he
On his way out the door
And I nodded back

I prayed a lot, for
A raise, for the rent when I needed it,
But nothing every came
Without a kick
And I thought God
Must have been listening
To folks in India

Now I talk to myself a
Lot and people worry
That I'm not in touch
But they are wrong because
What moves me is when I
Talk I listen
And when I ask a question
I answer
Ain't nothing wrong with that
~ Walter Dean Meyers

For more about Richmond Leake, click here. For more about Walter Dean Meyers, click here.
This poem and many more stunning works can be found in the book Here in Harlem: Poems in Many Voices, by Walter Dean Meyers.


Jeanne said...

I love all you share
I love you

Char said...

reminds me of a simon and garfunkel song - nice

WhiteStone said...

Thought how we look at others and how we treat them. They are "real" with real needs, emotions, thoughts, desires. We are so blind most times.

Leslie Avon Miller said...

Thank you. Our internal worlds - a gift to ourselves.

lakeviewer said...

What a lucky day for me! I get a visit from someone with such gifts to share and I make a new connection. The sun is shining!

Derrick said...

Hi Relyn,

We have learned a lot but still not enough. The unknown has too much power to frighten us.

maggie said...

Richmond's words are a lesson for us all to listen to ourselves and trust. What a tender poem.

Suz said...

that was a terrific poem
i do not know this poet,thanks for the intro
Listening is a hard thing to do
most of us think we are listening
but we are not we are only hearing
great post
thanks for still visiting me

Oliag said...

I enjoy meeting new this...

willow said...

Wonderful. I loved this.

Lynnelise said...

Cool poem, Relyn!
I love talking to myself, too! Sometimes I say the most amusing things! It's funny, but blogging is almost like talking to oneself, and Voila! you find someone was listening! On the other hand, how many times have we thought we were talking to another person only to find we were (apparently) really talking to ourselves! ;-)

HKatz said...

I like the tone of this poem so much; the voice is so natural, as if he's talking to himself and to us (and the good reader does listen!). And I like how it conveys loneliness so well - of being in the midst of people too wrapped up in themselves to just listen.

Listening well is an art.

Tracy said...

What moves me is when I
Talk I listen
And when I ask a question
I answer
Ain't nothing wrong with that...

Nothing wrong with that at all! Inquiry is how we find things out. A good talking to ourselves never hurts. ;o) Happy Day, Relyn ((HUGS))

Gayle said...

What a poem! Thanks for sharing it, Relyn!

Heart2Heart said...


Congratulations on winning a copy of the book, "You Can Still Wear Cute Shoes"!

Please email me back with your mailing information and I will get this out to you in the mail.

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Rita said...

Very interesting and very sad. It is a shame that some have no one to listen to them. Thanks for sharing this.

Jeanie said...

Such a thought-provoking poem. Beautiful photo with it, too.

Anonymous said...

love this. thoughtful + interesting. thanks for sharing.

xo Alison

Angie Muresan said...

This is the lot of many in every society. So sad. Thank you for sharing this. I am not familiar with the poetry of Walter Dean Meyers.

Ms. K @ Write On Thyme said...

I talk to myself all the time but I've never really asked why. Love getting to the bottom (truth) of things. Thanks for sharing this!

Terresa said...

A fine poem. Enjoyed it very much.

PS: I have a poetry contest going on over @ my blog this week, in case you're interested...

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