The Poetry Corner

On The Death Of W. C.

By Paul Laurence Dunbar

Thou arrant robber, Death! Couldst thou not find Some lesser one than he To rob of breath,-- Some poorer mind Thy prey to be? His mind was like the sky,-- As pure and free; His heart was broad and open As the sea. His soul shone purely through his face, And Love made him her dwelling place. Not less the scholar than the friend, Not less a friend than man; The manly life did shorter end Because so broad it ran. Weep not for him, unhappy Muse! His merits found a grander use Some other-where. God wisely sees The place that needs his qualities. Weep not for him, for when Death lowers O'er youth's ambrosia-scented bowers He only plucks the choicest flowers.