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The Collected Poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar

4.3  ·  Rating Details ·  292 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
This new "most complete" edition of the collected poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar, the virtual father of black American poetry, includes sixty poems not included in the previous -- and now out of print -- "Complete Poems." Sixteen of these were found in manuscript form.
Paperback, 396 pages
Published May 29th 1993 by University of Virginia Press (first published 1913)
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I have not read many poetry books and, in truth, I have not read a poetry book in many years. Poetry should be read in stages when it is easier to absorb what the author may be trying to convey. This book took a while and I should have read another book while reading this one.

I enjoyed the book. I thought it was well written poetry of the African-American experience in the United States. Dunbar poetically writes of the many aspects of the human spirt --- happiness, joy, sorrow, love, courtship,
Richard F. Schiller
Jun 29, 2014 Richard F. Schiller rated it it was ok
Shelves: poetry, american
Applaud the spirit of trying to write in his own communal dialect, but it makes the poem nearly unreadable for me.
Apr 24, 2014 Cheryl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I adore Paul L Dunbar and love his poetry, it speaks to me in a way that makes me feel it is written only for me.
Matt Miles
Mar 19, 2016 Matt Miles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Now in our time, when poets rhyme For money, fun, or fashion, 'Tis good to hear one voice so clear That thrills with honest passion."

The excerpt above could serve as a thesis statement for the best of Paul Lawrence Dunbar's poetry, including "Sympathy", "Ode to Ethiopia," and "The Haunted Oak": like many of his best poems in this collection they use standard English to convey the author's anger and frustration with the continuing effects of racism in his own lifetime. Even the dialectical poem
Jun 08, 2016 Angie rated it really liked it
Major Field Prep: 22/133
This 1994 collected edition of Dunbar's poetry reprints the 1913 Completed Works and adds an addition 60 or so poems that were not included in that posthumous volume. Dunbar's poetry takes on a wide variety of styles, genres, and forms and the most distinct difference in groupings is between his "dialect" phonetic language representation poetry and the standard English poetry. Early in his career Dunbar dubbed these his "minor" and "major" poems, a distinction that begins
Diana Kelly
Jan 10, 2013 Diana Kelly rated it it was amazing
Wonderful and varied poetry! A pleasure to be introduced in a book club to an author that apparently most African-Americans know and I had not heard of.

"He achieved recognition as America's first professional black literary man. The author of six volumes of well as of novels, librettos, songs and essays, Dunbar was known nationally at the turn of the century and accepted as a writer among both blacks and whites. He is remembered today chiefly as a poet." "Dubar will speak of the goo
Jun 14, 2012 Maggie rated it liked it
for some time i've been wanting to read some of dunbar's poetry and usf (university of south florida) finally got me there. in the apple store at itunes under itunesU there is a massive collection of well read classics thanks to the efforts of this school. one of which, lyrics of sunlight and shadow, i have just completed listening to. time well spent, imo.
Miss Clark
Oct 02, 2010 Miss Clark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the definitive edition of America's first African-American poet's work, as it brings together all of Dunbar's poems and well worth a read.

Dunbar's short stories are also excellent examples of early 20th century American literature, with wonderful local character and dialect, both of which are seen throughout his poetry.
Dec 21, 2015 Humphrey rated it liked it
Lyrics of Lowly Life, which I reviewed by itself, is great. The rest of the collection is a bit more uneven, but the strong poems are quite worth it. This is certainly the volume to get if you're going for Dunbar's poetry.
Mar 07, 2015 Steve rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Liked a great many of his poems. Including, Antebellum Sermon, Colored Soldiers, The Old Front Gate, the Colored Band and When they listed colored soldiers.
Stephen Bess
Jan 04, 2011 Stephen Bess rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: All lovers of poetry
Can't go wrong with Dunbar. He is one of my favorite poets. I love verse just as much as I love his dialectical poetry. He's a big influence in my own writing.
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Paul Laurence Dunbar (June 27, 1872 – February 9, 1906) was a seminal American poet of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Dunbar gained national recognition for his 1896 Lyrics of a Lowly Life, one poem in the collection Ode to Ethiopia. In 2002, scholar Molefi Kete Asante listed Paul Laurence Dunbar on his list of 100 Greatest African Americans.

Dunbar was born in Dayton, Ohio to parents who
More about Paul Laurence Dunbar...

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“NOT THEY WHO SOAR Not they who soar, but they who plod Their rugged way, unhelped, to God Are heroes; they who higher fare, And, flying, fan the upper air, Miss all the toil that hugs the sod. 'Tis they whose backs have felt the rod, Whose feet have pressed the path unshod, May smile upon defeated care, Not they who soar. High up there are no thorns to prod, Nor boulders lurking 'neath the clod To turn the keenness of the share, For flight is ever free and rare; But heroes they the soil who 've trod, Not they who soar!” 1 likes
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