You say I O.K.ed LONG DISTANCE? O.K.ed it when? My goodness, Central That was then! I'm mad and disgusted With that Negro now. I don't pay no REVERSED CHARGES nohow. You say, I will pay it— Else you'll take out my phone? You better let My phone alone. I didn't ask him To telephone me. Roscoe knows darn well LONG DISTANCE Ain't free. If I ever catch him, Lawd, have pity! Calling me up From Kansas City. Just to say he loves me! I knowed that was so. Why didn't he tell me some'n I don't know? For instance, what can Them other girls do That Alberta K. Johnson Can't do—and more, too? What's that, Central? You say you don't care Nothing about my Private affair? Well, even less about your PHONE BILL, does I care! Un-humm-m! . . . Yes! You say I gave my O.K.? Well, that O.K. you may keep— But I sure ain't gonna pay!
Langston Hughes - 1902-1967
The Weary Blues
Droning a drowsy syncopated tune, Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon, I heard a Negro play. Down on Lenox Avenue the other night By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light He did a lazy sway . . . He did a lazy sway . . . To the tune o' those Weary Blues. With his ebony hands on each ivory key He made that poor piano moan with melody. O Blues! Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool. Sweet Blues! Coming from a black man's soul. O Blues! In a deep song voice with a melancholy tone I heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan— "Ain't got nobody in all this world, Ain't got nobody but ma self. I's gwine to quit ma frownin' And put ma troubles on the shelf." Thump, thump, thump, went his foot on the floor. He played a few chords then he sang some more— "I got the Weary Blues And I can't be satisfied. Got the Weary Blues And can't be satisfied— I ain't happy no mo' And I wish that I had died." And far into the night he crooned that tune. The stars went out and so did the moon. The singer stopped playing and went to bed While the Weary Blues echoed through his head. He slept like a rock or a man that's dead.