What’s a writer with limited financial resources to do when the holidays roll around and he wants to send gifts? For Langston Hughes, during the holiday season of 1950, the answer was to share some of his wit in homemade Christmas postcards.
In one, Hughes wrote:
IF TIMES WERE NOT SO DOGGONE HARD
I MIGHT SEND YOU A GIFT
BUT SINCE I’M BROKE AS BROKE CAN BE,
HERE’S JUST A CHRISTMAS LIFT:
The draft typescript for this and other cards in a series of Christmas greetings are among the extensive Langston Hughes Papers in the Yale Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The Hughes archives were given to Yale University by the author beginning in 1941, continuing throughout his lifetime, and including more materials from his estate upon his death in 1967.
The 1950 Hughes holiday cards are all on view in a special pop-up holiday display on the Beinecke Library’s mezzanine in temporary exhibition cases from Dec. 8-20. The Beinecke Library’s ground floor and mezzanine exhibition areas are free and open to the public seven days a week. Visit the library’s website for more information on the exhibit. Langston Hughes Holiday Display: The Thought that Counts.
RUNNING A DEFICIT
THIS YEAR –––
BUT NOT IN WISHING
YOU GOOD CHEER!