The big sea is that of literature, and more broadly, the world, as Hughes -- the Negro poet, novelist and playwright, found it. His is a colorful and varied autobiography, yet rather impersonal. From his boyhood in Kansas, to Mexico where he summered with his father and taught English, to college at Columbia which he finally left to go off on a freighter to Africa. He knew Paris at the peak of the Negro vogue, where he worked as cook and waiter in the Montmartre hotspots. Then Washington as a bus boy at which time Vachel Lindsay first brought him into prominence as a poet. Finally New York and Harlem, at the heighth of the Negro Renaissance when writers and show people intermingled casually. A diversified life, of many people and many experiences, but the man and his work appear but rarely.