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Lyrics of Love and Laughter

by Paul Laurence Dunbar

In the Morning

Additional Information
  • Year Published: 1913
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: United States of America
  • Source: Dunbar, P.L. (1913). The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar. New York: Dodd, Mead, and Company.
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 6.5
  • Word Count: 422

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‘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.
T’ink 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
Wile you sleep—w’y hit’s a sin!
Ain’t 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 ah’ 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!”