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Portrait of Langston Hughes, 1936.
Writer Langston Hughes was inspired by his Grandma

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Langston Hughes Was Born
February 1, 1902

Do members of your family like to tell stories? The tradition of storytelling inspired poet and writer Langston Hughes, who was born in Joplin, Missouri, on February 1, 1902. Hughes spent much of his childhood with his grandmother, who filled his imagination with stories of the past. As a result, Hughes developed a deep interest in African American culture and history that he later wrote into his many stories, autobiographies, histories, and poems.

Hughes wrote the poem "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" the summer after he graduated from high school. It starts like this:

I've known rivers:
I've known rivers ancient as the world and older
Than the flow of human blood in human veins. My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

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