Thou Art My Lute

By Paul Laurence Dunbar 1872–1906 Paul Laurence Dunbar
Thou art my lute, by thee I sing,—
     My being is attuned to thee.
Thou settest all my words a-wing,
     And meltest me to melody.
 
Thou art my life, by thee I live,
     From thee proceed the joys I know;
Sweetheart, thy hand has power to give
     The meed of love—the cup of woe.
 
Thou art my love, by thee I lead
     My soul the paths of light along,
From vale to vale, from mead to mead,
     And home it in the hills of song.
 
My song, my soul, my life, my all,
     Why need I pray or make my plea,
Since my petition cannot fall;
     For I’m already one with thee!

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Paul Laurence Dunbar 1872–1906

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

Subjects Relationships, Love, Men & Women, Arts & Sciences, Music, Romantic Love

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Paul  Laurence Dunbar

Biography

Paul Laurence Dunbar was one the first influential black poets in American literature. He enjoyed his greatest popularity in the early twentieth century following the publication of dialectic verse in collections such as Majors and Minors and Lyrics of Lowly Life. But the dialectic poems constitute only a small portion of Dunbar's canon, which is replete with novels, short stories, essays, and many poems in standard English. In . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Love, Men & Women, Arts & Sciences, Music, Romantic Love

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.