Essay on The Poetry of Robert Hayden

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Although the majority of Robert Hayden's writings address racial themes and depicts events in African-American history, he also wrote short poems that capture his own personal experiences. Hayden has an enormous amount of great poems and short stories, but as I read through many of them, I was touched by two specific poems that I felt I could personally relate to. I chose these poems because I am able to put myself into the story-line and understand what the writer is talking about. I believe that a good writer is able to reach any reader regardless of race, gender, or age. Hayden possessed an incredible skill with his language and the structures of his poems that could almost pull the reader right out of their chair and place them in the…show more content…
The first thing I had learned about Hayden's style before I began reading his actual poems was that he frequently used first-person point of view. Many critics mimic the same thoughts when they discuss how a large majority of his poems were based on his personal experience. He uses his recollection of himself in relation to something else: other characters, different experiences, and even through works of art. He tends to reflect back on numerous times of his childhood. They are clearly personal and some almost seem biographical as he remembers his past and his family as he grew older. These writing are not usually happy for him or easy to put on paper for everyone to see. They seem to bring up pain, guilt, sorrow and a sense of suffering. His writings reflect what he feels on the inside: lost identity, loneliness, and his longing need for attention. In "Those Winter Sundays" Hayden tells a story about a son looking back at his father during his childhood. The poem describes a father that through words doesn't necessarily show love or affection towards his family. It captures the need of love from a distant father to his child. Through reading this poem, it is discovered that the love the son was looking for was always present it was just communicated more through the fathers efforts and less through the type of tenderness that is expected from a child. He explains in small details his fathers suffering. The man
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