Paul Laurence Dunbar - West Fargo Public Schools

Report
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Presentation by Katelyn Jipson
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
One Man Against the Majority
"Paul Laurence Dunbar stands out as the first poet from the Negro race in the United States to
show a combined mastery over poetic material and poetic technique, to reveal innate literary
distinction in what he wrote, and to maintain a high level of performance. He was the first to
rise to a height from which he could take a perspective view of his own race. He was the first to
see objectively its humor, its superstitions, its short-comings; the first to feel sympathetically its
heart-wounds, its yearnings, its aspirations, and to voice them all in a purely literary form"
(“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 3).
These are the words of James Weldon Johnson, a friend who recognized Dunbar as
being the most important African American poet of his time. Paul Laurence Dunbar is the son
Joshua Dunbar, who was a former slave, Union soldier, and plasterer, and Matilda Glass
Murphy, who was a former slave and laundress (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 1). He was born in
Dayton, Ohio on June 27, 1872 and died on February 9, 1906 at the age of thirty-three of
tuberculosis (Revell 2, 9). His mother passed on her love for literature to Dunbar and taught
him how to read. Both of his parents, though, would tell him stories about being slaves that
would eventually be inspiration to much of his literary works (Revell 2). Dunbar’s childhood in
Dayton was rather peaceful and fulfilling, and he grew up practically untouched by racism until
after high school (Revell 2). He was elected president of the Philomathean Literary Society at
his high school, and by his junior year of high school in 1889, he had already had published
poems in the Dayton Herald (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 3). One of Dunbar's former teachers
invited Dunbar to the Western Association of Writers in 1892, where he met a man named
James Newton Mathews, who eventually played a major role in the publication of Dunbar's
first published work of poetry (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 3).
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Dunbar always loved writing throughout his childhood and adolescent years, but
as he got older, money and the fact that he was a black writer were the primary issues for him in
actually publishing his works ("The Life of Paul Laurence Dunbar"). Dunbar published his first
book of a collection of poems, entitled Oak and Ivy in 1892, but he received only a modest sum
for the book. He had to continue with his job as an elevator operator to pay off debts to his
publisher, and he would often sell his book for one dollar to passengers on the elevator he
controlled ("The Life of Paul Laurence Dunbar"). Dunbar didn't have any additional schooling
after high school because of limited money resources, so he had to work as an elevator boy
while still constantly writing poems, short stories and novels (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 4).
Though, in 1899, he was given an honorary M.A. degree by Atlanta University (Revell 6). He
often passed time reading poetry again and again by his favorite poets - William Shakespeare,
Edgar Allen Poe, John Keats, and his all-time favorite, James Whitcomb Riley. Riley’s humor
and dialect were rather influential to some of his later works of poetry (“Paul Laurence
Dunbar” 3). After publishing Oak and Ivy, he also published a couple more collections of poetry,
such as: Majors and Minors and Lyrics of a Lowly Life, which established Dunbar as America's
foremost black poet (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 5).
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
The main theme of Dunbar's poetry and literary work is to express the life and soul
of the people of his race (Revell 4). He discussed topics such as the depressing plight of blacks
in American society in one of his most popular poems, "Sympathy" (Revell 3). In his books of
collections of poetry, he sometimes used a dialect verse that was known as "Negro dialect". He
became well-known for his dialect verse, and both black and white audiences alike took pleasure
in reading his works of literature (Revell 3). Dunbar is very important to the world of literature
because he took a huge step towards black and white equality in poetry. He let the people of
America witness the lives of black citizens through his words, and they listened, making him
the most important black poet in American literature (“Paul Laurence Dunbar” 6). Dunbar
received a great deal of criticism and unfairness while trying to get jobs and publish his works
because of his race, but later on the same factor made him famous. His powerful words about
the feelings and experiences a black person went through every day during his lifetime shed
light upon the subject, and he wasn't just another black man walking the streets complaining
about his life ("The Life of Paul Laurence Dunbar"). He stood up and demanded attention be
brought to an issue he knew wasn't right, and for that he will forever be remembered as the man
who changed the lives of black poets forever.
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
“We Wear the Mask”
“Sympathy”
“Life's Tragedy”
“Encouragement”
“A Choice”
“A Negro Love Song”
“A Golden Day”
“Little Brown Baby”
“Confirmation”
“Morning”
“Ships that Pass in the Night”
“The Paradox”
“My Little March Girl”
“If I Could But Forget”
“Frederick Douglass”
“Common Things”
“Encouraged”
“The Debt”
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
“Accountability”
“The Unlucky Apple”
“The Haunted Oak”
“Summer in the South”
“To Dan”
“Old”
“The Made to Order Smile”
“Signs of the Times”
“Merry Autumn”
“The Lawyers' Ways”
“Distinction”
“Song”
“Howdy, Honey, Howdy”
“Theology”
“At the Tavern”
“The Barrier”
“The Old Front Gate”
“When All is Done”
Bibliography
More Poems by
Paul Laurence
Dunbar
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Life
By Paul Laurence Dunbar
A CRUST of bread and a corner to sleep in,
A minute to smile and an hour to weep in,
A pint of joy to a peck of trouble,
And never a laugh but the moans come
double;
And that is life!
A crust and a corner that love makes
precious,
With a smile to warm and the tears to refresh
us;
And joy seems sweeter when cares come
after,
And a moan is the finest of foils for laughter;
And that is life!
Original
Poems
Analysis of “Life”
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Analysis of “Life” by Paul Laurence Dunbar
The poem, “Life”, by Paul Laurence Dunbar uses the literary element of hyperbole
in an interesting way. This poem explains how life can seem very unfair at times with more
hardships than happiness, but if you look at life with an optimistic view, even the most
seemingly unfortunate events can be turned around for the better. There is a line in this poem
that reads, “A minute to smile and an hour to weep in/ a pint of joy to a peck of trouble”. This
line is representing the bad in life that most people tend to focus on. Another line later on in the
poem, though, reads, “With a smile to warm and the tears to refresh us/ and joy seems sweeter
when cares come after”. This line represents that not every unhappy period in life is what it
seems, for sometimes if you look at the situation in another way or focus on the good, it will
seem a lot better. The first lines mentioned represent the literary element of hyperbole by
exaggerating the truth for emphasis. Truthfully, life does not only contain a minute of happiness
to every hour of sadness, but Dunbar uses an hyperbole here to create emphasis on the contrast
with the second stanza of the poem in which he explains how life’s hardships can bring
contentment later on. This hyperbole impacts the poem as a whole by allowing people to
develop a sense of hopefulness and faith that their lives, too, will turn around someday no
matter how unpromising it seems at the time. Dunbar’s use of hyperbole in his poem, “Life”,
creates encouragement for the people that feel life is never going to look up by showing people
that even the worst situations in life can be optimistically turned around in the end.
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
"A Poem of Faith" by Paul Laurence Dunbar is about waiting for the good times to come in
times of misfortune. Dunbar is saying that although your life doesn't look like it's going too well
at the moment, you shouldn't let sorrow overtake you but wait for the good times to come. I
really like this poem because it reminded me that even when I'm having the worst of days I
should keep my head high or it will get worse. I especially like the line where Dunbar says,
"Smile at old Fortune's adverse tide/ smile when the scoffers sneer and chide", because it takes
a very strong person to cast off hurtful words of others.
A Poem of Faith
By Paul Laurence Dunbar
Thy woes shall perish.
Smile at old Fortune's adverse tide,
I think that though the clouds be dark,
Smile when the scoffers sneer and chide.
That though the waves dash o'er the bark,
Oh, not for you the gems
Yet after while the light will come,
That after while the that pale,
And in calm waters safe at home
And not for you the flowers that fail;
The bark will anchor.
Let this thought cherish:
Weep not, my sad-eyed, gray-robed maid,
clouds will part,
Because your fairest blossoms fade,
And then with joy the waiting heart
That sorrow still o'erruns your cup,
Shall feel the light come stealing in,
And even though you root them up,
That drives away the cloud of sin
The weeds grow ranker.
And breaks its power.
And you shall burst your chrysalis,
For after while your tears shall cease,
And wing away to realms of bliss,
And sorrow shall give way to peace;
Untrammeled, pure, divinely free,
The flowers shall bloom, the weeds shall die, Above all earth's anxiety
And in that faith seen, by and by
From that same hour.
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
"We Wear the Mask" by Paul Laurence Dunbar is a powerful poem that describes how Dunbar
and many other black people felt about racism going on during his time. He felt as if he was
wearing a mask because of his skin color, and that he had to put on a façade for everyone
around him. The line that says, "This debt we pay to human guile/ with torn and bleeding
hearts we smile", creates a strong but distressing image in my head. This line shows how a black
person during this time was truly not allowed to be himself or herself because of the terribly
harsh racism going on everywhere around them.
We Wear the Mask
By Paul Laurence Dunbar
We wear the mask that grins and lies,
It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,-This debt we pay to human guile;
With torn and bleeding hearts we smile,
And mouth with myriad subtleties.
Why should the world be overwise,
In counting all our tears and sighs?
Nay, let them only see us, while
We wear the mask.
We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries
To thee from tortured souls arise.
We sing, but oh the clay is vile
Beneath our feet, and long the mile;
But let the world dream otherwise,
We wear the mask!
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
A Death Song
By Paul Laurence Dunbar
Lay me down beneaf de willers in de grass,
Whah de branch 'll go a-singin' as it pass.
An' w'en I's a-layin' low,
I kin hyeah it as it go
Singin', "Sleep, my honey, tek yo' res' at las'."
Lay me nigh to whah hit meks a little pool,
An' de watah stan's so quiet lak an' cool,
Whah de little birds in spring,
Ust to come an' drink an' sing,
An' de chillen waded on dey way to school.
Let me settle w'en my shouldahs draps dey load
Nigh enough to hyeah de noises in de road;
Fu' I t'ink de las' long res'
Gwine to soothe my sperrit bes'
Ef I's layin' 'mong de t'ings I's allus knowed.
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Katelyn Jipson’s
poem inspired by
“A Death Song”
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Comfort
By Katelyn Jipson
Far away but not gone
Your soul has stayed behind
Sadness, pain, and loneliness now consume my heart
Crying for lost memories
Weeping for missed opportunities
Longing for your sweet comforts once again
But snapshots of moments with you
are filing through my brain
You were the one who always knew the safest way to go
Now that you're gone I wish I would have cherished more
Like every gentle touch and warm embrace
Reminding me of the overflowing
amount of love within you
You gave everything you had to others
And saved nothing for yourself
I know you're watching over me
In your home above the clouds
I know you'll be there on the good days or the bad
Only one short prayer away
So I am not sad anymore
You bring me comfort and joy
You had the greatest essence I ever knew
And I'll always have you on my mind
Far away but not gone
Your soul has stayed behind
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
He Had His Dream
By Paul Laurence Dunbar
He had his dream, and all through life,
Worked up to it through toil and strife.
Afloat fore'er before his eyes,
It colored for him all his skies:
The storm-cloud dark
Above his bark,
The calm and listless vault of blue
Took on its hopeful hue,
It tinctured every passing beam -He had his dream.
He labored hard and failed at last,
His sails too weak to bear the blast,
The raging tempests tore away
And sent his beating bark astray.
But what cared he
For wind or sea!
He said, "The tempest will be short,
My bark will come to port."
He saw through every cloud a gleam -He had his dream.
Katelyn Jipson’s
poem inspired by “He
Had His Dream”
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
A Dream
By Katelyn Jipson
He saw through every cloud a gleam—
He had his dream
A dream is too big to fit in your pocket
And too special to leave behind
Life brings many hardships and pain
But stay tough and fight your evils off with laughter
Dream with your heart and not your eyes
And if you stumble along the way
Well don't give up
Each dream is precious
A dream is like gas to your car
It pushes you through the long, winding road of life
Without a dream you have no goals
Without any goals you have no purpose
So believe in yourself and set your standards high
Don't let your disappointments slow you down
But use them as motivation to get stronger
Inspiration comes from anywhere and
everywhere
So dream as big and as often as you please
Dream to be yourself
And show the world everything you have to offer
Every part of you is special
And so is every thought you think
A dream is something sacred
But still it should be shared
Look for every opportunity in any situation
And don't shoot down the challenging ones
For anyone or anything could take you
One step
Closer
To your
Dream
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Dog Days
By Katelyn Jipson
Sniff sniff
I smell the grilling food
Sunglasses on, vibrant sky
Cool breeze flyin’ by
Grass is squishing between my toes
On the trampoline I strike a pose
Sun is beating on my skin
I see a spider and, eek! I cringe
Sweat drip dripping down my back
Like a sink left on, oh drat!
Bonfires and baseball games are coming to an end
I will never forget the summer of 2010
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Friendship
By Katelyn Jipson
Someone who's oh so special
Who you hold right next your heart
The bond as strong as metal
No one will ever tear you apart
All your secrets are safe with them
No insecurities or holding back
You’re only yourself, no need to pretend
They're always the one to keep you on track
Never bored when you're together
Constantly reminiscing about the good times
Or talking about simple things such as the weather
So close you're practically partners in crime
A sister at heart, you're one in the same
Silly inside jokes keep you laughing to no end
Having fun is always your aim
They're not just anyone… they're your best friend!
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Biography
List of
Works
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
http://go.galegroup.com/ps/retrieve.do?sgHitCountType=None&sort=RELEVANCE&inPS=t
rue&prodId=LitRC&userGroupName=west75013&tabID=T002&searchId=R1&resultListTyp
e=RESULT_LIST&contentSegment=&searchType=BasicSearchForm&currentPosition=1&co
ntentSet=GALE%7CH1000027381&&docId=GALE|H1000027381&docType=GALE&role=
LitRC (Biography)
http://go.galegroup.com/ps/retrieve.do?sgHitCountType=None&sort=RELEVANCE&inPS=t
rue&prodId=LitRC&userGroupName=west75013&tabID=T002&searchId=R1&resultListTyp
e=RESULT_LIST&contentSegment=&searchType=BasicSearchForm&currentPosition=3&co
ntentSet=GALE%7CH1200001086&&docId=GALE|H1200001086&docType=GALE&role=
LitRC (Biography)
http://www.dunbarsite.org/biopld.asp (Biography)
http://www.dunbarsite.org/gallery/ADeathSong.asp (Inspired Poem)
http://www.dunbarsite.org/gallery/HeHadHisDream.asp (Inspired Poem)
http://www.dunbarsite.org/gallery/Life.asp (Analytical Para.)
http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/a-poem-of-faith/ (Intro. Para. 1)
http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15888 (Intro. Para. 2)
http://www.poemhunter.com/paul-laurence-dunbar/ (Collection of Works)
List of
Works
Biography
Sample
Poems
Inspired
Poems
Original
Poems
Bibliography
Pictures
http://www.poemofquotes.com/paullaurencedunbar/
http://www.etftrends.com/2009/06/june-etf-performance-report/
http://www.flickr.com
http://www.masks-wigs-and-costumes.com/Masks/paper_mache.asp
http://bulgaria-photos.info/wallpapers1280.html
http://whil.us/hawaii.html
http://www.versebyverseministry.org/about/how_can_i_go_to_heaven/
http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=1660&picture=bread-crust
http://www.nps.gov/daav/forkids/paullaurencedunbar.htm
http://www.studentsoftheworld.info/sites/society/amazing.php
http://famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/paul_laurence_dunbar/poems
http://www.poems-and-poetry.com/poets/paul-laurence-dunbar-poems
http://www.physicschick.com/pole/index_2008_jan.html

similar documents