Paul Laurence Dunbar

(1872-1906 / Ohio / United States)

In The Morning - Poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar

'LIAS! 'Lias! Bless de Lawd!
Don' you know de day's erbroad?
Ef you don' git up, you scamp,
Dey'll be trouble in dis camp.
Tink I gwine to let you sleep
W'ile I meks yo' boa'd an' keep?
Dat's a putty howdy-do-
Don' you hyeah me, 'Lias -you?

Bet ef I come crost dis flo'
You won’ fin’ no time to sno'
Daylight all a-shinin’ in
W'ile you sleep -w'y hit's a sin!
Aint de can'le-light enough
To bu'n out widout a snuff,
But you go de mo'nin' thoo
Bu'nin' up de daylight too?

'Lias, don’ you hyeah me call?
No use tu'nin' to'ds de wall;
I kin hyeah dat mattuss squeak;
Don' you hyeah me w’en I speak?
Dis hyeah clock done struck off six-
Ca'line, bring me dem ah sticks!
Oh, you down, suh; huh, you down-
Look hyeah, don' you daih to frown.

Ma'ch yo'se'f an wash yo' face,
Don' you splattah all de place;
I got somep'n else to do,
'Sides jes' cleanin' aftah you.
Tek dat comb an' fix yo' haid!-
Looks jes’ lak a feddah baid.
Look hyeah, boy, I let you see
You sha' n't roll yo' eyes at me.

Come hyeah; bring me dat ah strap!
Boy, I'll whup you 'twell you drap;
You done felt yo’se’f too strong,
An' you sholy got me wrong.
Set down at dat table thaih;
Jes' you whimpah ef you daih!
Evah mo'nin' on dis place,
Seem lak I mus' lose my grace.

Fol' yo' han's an' bow yo' haid-
Wait ontwell de blessin' 's said;
'Lawd, have mussy on ouah souls-'
(Don' you daih to tech dem rolls-)
'Bless de food we gwine to eat-'
(You set still -I see yo' feet;
You jes' try dat trick agin!)
'Gin us peace an' joy. Amen!'


Comments about In The Morning by Paul Laurence Dunbar

  • (2/22/2019 4:54:00 PM)

    I have always had my students to learn this poem along with other Black poetry. A great poem (Report)Reply

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  • (10/18/2018 11:31:00 AM)

    I love this poem i always have Every since i 1st heard my sister practicing before i started schoo (Report)Reply

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  • (6/25/2018 4:27:00 PM)

    The first poem taught by my mother. Yahweh keep us. (Report)Reply

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  • (5/25/2018 12:45:00 PM)

    In 6th grade (2004) , our teacher had us do a project where we had to recite poems.My mom had a book of Langston Hughes poems and we chose this one! I remember being excited, raising my hand to go first, and getting a standing ovation from the class and having to do an encore. I performed it for my family at the next gathering and everyone loved it. Now I'm 25 and can still remember every word. I should perform it for the family again soon. (Report)Reply

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  • (3/18/2018 9:53:00 PM)

    When I was in the 6th grade ('51) I had a classmate who would regularly recite this poem verbatim from memory. And 'tho I'd never seen or heard it since, I've never forgotten it. Now, having found it, I know why. (Report)Reply

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  • (5/9/2010 7:47:00 PM)

    I WAS SOOOOO PLEASED TO FIND THIS POEM...MY MOTHER USED TO READ MR. DUNBAR'S POETRY TO US ALL THE TIME WHEN I WAS COMING UP....LOVE THEM...LOVED THE WAY SHE READ THEM...MY YOUNGEST SISTER ASKED US TODAY IF WE KNEW THE POEMS THAT MOM USED TO READ...I TEXTED HER BACK AND RECITED THIS POEM....ALWAYS REMEMBERED IT...RECITED IT TO MYSELF ALL THE TIME...TOLD HER I WOULD LOOK THEM UP...OMG...SOO HAPPY (Report)Reply

    12 person liked.
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Poem Submitted: Friday, April 2, 2010



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