November 30, 2015

Performance poems

Jump Back, Honey: The Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar
with art by Ashley Bryan, Carole Byard, Jan Spivey Gilchrist, Brian Pinkney, Jerry Pinkney, and Faith Ringgold

Paul Laurence Dunbar was an American poet with a knack for rhythm and dialogue that is pleasing to the ear. His poems are well-suited for reading aloud. He wrote some of his poems in Black dialect, which may prove a challenge to readers, but the emotions evoked are easily discernible. The artwork is bright and happy or dark and soft accordingly, adding to the book's joyfulness.

A brief biography of Dunbar opens the book, while in the endnotes, each artist shares memories of first encountering Dunbar's poetry. An excellent book to augment multicultural libraries.

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