"Those Winter Sundays" is a poem penned by Robert Hayden first appeared in his book A Ballad of Remembrance in 1962 though some sources indicate that it was first published in 1966 in the book titled Collected Poems of Robert Hayden (poets.org, n.d., para. 3).
Robert Hayden was born in 1913 in Detroit, Michigan, where he lived with both his biological parents and a foster family (poets.org, n.d., para. 1). Upon graduating of high school, Hayden attended Wayne State University as well as the University of Michigan (Dove, 2013). He worked as a researcher for the Federal Writers' Project and taught at both Fisk University and the University of Michigan (Dove, 2013). Hayden published nine books throughout his lifetime and was honored with the Hopwood Poetry Award and the World Festival of Negro Arts Grand Prize (Dove, 2013). Hayden passed away in 1980 in Ann Arbor, Michigan (Dove, 2013).
"The Harlem Renaissance was the name given to the cultural, social, and artistic explosion that took place in Harlem between the end of World War I and the middle of the 1930s" (Wormser, 2002, para. 1). With the slavery not far from recent memory, many black writers and artists moved from the countryside to the urban setting of Harlem (Wormser, 2002). This centralization of creative and talented individuals served as a cultural proving ground for their collective arts. Racial pride as well as civil and political rights was a few themes found within the Harlem Renaissance, which chiefly was championed by Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, Claude Mckay, and W.E.B. Du Bois to name a few (Wormser, 2002). Many writers and artist began to distinguish their voice by incorporating many aspects of jazz such as improvisation into their art (Wormser, 2002). .
Surface Level Details.
This poem depicts the early events of a cold Sunday morning as described from a child's perspective.