Laydy Jams plays "Fulfillment"


Ashley Bryan (1923–2022)
Fulfillment (from Sail Away), 2015
Collage of cut colored and painted papers with graphite and printed text mounted on a tracing paper overlay
The Morgan Library & Museum, Gift of the Ashley Bryan Center; 2021.25:10

© 2022 The Ashley Bryan Center. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved
Photography by Dessmin Sidhu
"Fulfillment" by Langston Hughes, by permission of Harold Ober Associates Incorporated.
Musical composition © Sejal Lal


Sandy Campbell: Hughes’s poems have often been set to music – a form of tribute he particularly enjoyed, since he drew on the rhythms of the blues and jazz in writing his poetry. The Canadian group Laydy Jams, consisting of Sejal Lal and Missy D, emphasized the sunny, dreamy aspects of the poem in their setting.

“Fulfillment” by Langston Hughes

The earth-meaning
Like the sky-meaning
Was fulfilled.

We got up
And went to the river,
Touched silver water,
Laughed and bathed
In the sunshine.

Became a bright ball of light
For us to play with,
A yellow curtain,
A velvet screen.