- 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.
- Flesch–Kincaid Level: 6.5
- Word Count: 122
Dunbar, P. (1913). "Dead". Lyrics of Lowly Life (Lit2Go Edition). Retrieved September 27, 2023, from
Dunbar, Paul Laurence. ""Dead"." Lyrics of Lowly Life. Lit2Go Edition. 1913. Web. <>. September 27, 2023.
Paul Laurence Dunbar, ""Dead"," Lyrics of Lowly Life, Lit2Go Edition, (1913), accessed September 27, 2023,.
A knock is at her door, but she is weak;
Strange dews have washed the paint streaks from her cheek;
She does not rise, but, ah, this friend is known,
And knows that he will find her all alone.
So opens he the door, and with soft tread
Goes straightway to the richly curtained bed.
His soft hand on her dewy head he lays.
A strange white light she gives him for his gaze.
Then, looking on the glory of her charms,
He crushes her resistless in his arms.
Stand back! look not upon this bold embrace,
Nor view the calmness of the wanton’s face;
With joy unspeakable and ‘bated breath,
She keeps her last, long liaison with death!