Richard Wright is best known for his fiction, although he published several poems between 1933 and 1938. Wright suffered from amoebic dysentery during the last two years of his life (1959-1960) and turned to writing haiku. During his lifetime he wrote more than 4,000 haiku; 817 of which are collected in Haiku: This Other World.
"Rest for the Weary"
Selected Biographical Information
Fabre, Michel. The Unfinished Quest of Richard Wright. New York: Morrow. 1973.
Gayle, Addison. Richard Wright: Ordeal of a Native Son. Garden City: Anchor Press. 1980.
Walker, Margaret. Richard Wright, Daemonic Genius: A Portrait of the Man, A Critical Look at His Work. New York: Warner. 1988.
Kinnamon, Keneth. The emergence of Richard Wright: A Study in Literature and Society. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. 1972.
Bone, Robert. Richard Wright. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. 1969.
I am nobody:
The crow flew so fast
One autumn evening
This autumn evening
In the falling snow
The scarecrow's old hat
Just enough of snow
Shut in the ice box,
Spring begins shyly
An apple blossom
A balmy spring wind
Why did this spring wood
A sleepless spring night:
The day is so long
That sparrow bent dawn,
The sudden thunder
Tossing all day long,
A tolling church bell:
A bloody knife blade
Crying and crying,
A nude fat woman
Amid the daisies
The green cockleburs
An Indian summer
Amidst the flowers
In this tiny pond
A valley village
In a damp attic,
The Christmas season:
Burning out its time,
Uncle Tom's Children: Four Novellas. Harper, 1938.
Native Son. Harper, 1940.
Twelve Million Black Voices: A Folk History of the Negro in the U.S. Viking, 1941.
Black Boy: A Record of Childhood and Youth. Harper, 1945.
The Outsider. Harper, 1953.
Savage Holiday. Avon, 1954.
Black Power: A Record of Reactions in a Land of Pathos. Harper, 1954.
White Man, Listen! Doubleday, 1957.
The Long Dream. Doubleday, 1958.
Eight Men. World, 1961.
Lawd Today. Avon, 1963.
The Man Who Lived Underground. Aubier-Flammarion, 1971.
American Hunger. Harper, 1977.
Rite of Passage. HarperCollins, 1994.
Haiku: This Other World. Arcade, 1998.
Hakutani, Yoshinobu. Cross-Cultural Visions in African American Modernism: From Spatial Narrative to Jazz Haiku. Columbus, OH: Ohio State UP, 2006.
Hakutani, Yoshinobu. “Richard Wright's Haiku, Zen, and the African 'Primal Outlook Upon Life.” Modern Philology: Critical and Historical Studies in Literature, Medieval Through Contemporary. 104:4 (2007 May), pp. 510-28.
Iadonisi, Richard. “I Am Nobody: The Haiku of Richard Wright.” MELUS: The Journal of the Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States. 30:3 (2005 Fall), pp. 179-200.
Kinnamon, Keneth. “Wright: Proletarian Poet.” Concerning Poetry. 2:1 (1969), pp. 39-50.
Kodama, Sanehide. “Influence on Richard Wright in His Last Years: English Haiku as a New Genre.” Tamkang Review: A Quarterly of Comparative Studies Between Chinese and Foreign Literatures. 15:1-4 (1984 Autumn-1985 Summer), pp. 63-73.
Ogburn, Floyd, Jr. “Richard Wright's Unpublished Haiku: A World Elsewhere.” MELUS, 23:3 (1998 Fall), pp. 57-81.
Tener, Robert L. “Union with Nature: Richard Wright and the Art of Haiku.” Chiba Review. 10 (1988), pp. 19-34.
Zheng, Jianquing. “The South in Richard Wright's Haiku.” Notes on Contemporary Literature, 37:2 (2007 March), pp. 6-9.