Paul Laurence Dunbar

Paul Laurence Dunbar

About Paul Laurence Dunbar

Paul Laurence Dunbar (June 27, 1872 – February 9, 1906) was an African-American poet, novelist, and playwright of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Born in Dayton, Ohio, to parents who had been slaves in Kentucky before the American Civil War, Dunbar started to write as a child and was president of his high school's literary society. He published his first poems at the age of 16 in a Dayton newspaper.

Suffering from tuberculosis, Dunbar died at the age of 33.

    Poems by Paul Laurence Dunbar

  • Sympathy

    in Famous Life Poems

    I know what the caged bird feels, alas!
    When the sun is bright on the upland slopes;
    When the wind stirs soft through the springing grass,
    And the river flows like a stream of glass;

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    • Stories 0
    • Shares 56
    • Favorited 4
    • Votes 12
    • Rating 4.33
  • We Wear The Mask

    in Famous Sad Poems

    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,

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    • Stories 3
    • Shares 816
    • Favorited 13
    • Votes 185
    • Rating 4.45
    • Poem of the Week
    Featured Shared Story

    A wonderful poem Paul Laurence Dunbar wrote many years ago, after slavery was abolished.
    How it must have hurt to know his parents had been slaves...

    Imagine the pain that slavery...

    Read complete story

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