A Brown Girl Dead

Poem by Countee Cullen (1903-1946). Poems used by permission of the Amistad Research Center, New Orleans, LA. Premiere: December 13, 2013, Kerrytown Concert House, Ann Arbor, MI, with Darryl Taylor, countertenor and Kathryn Goodson, piano.

Date: 2013Composer: Lori LaitmanText: Countee CullenSong Collection: Sable Pride

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With two white roses on her breasts,

White candles at head and feet,

Dark Madonna of the grave she rests;

Lord Death has found her sweet.


Her mother pawned her wedding ring

To lay her out in white;

She’d be so proud she’d dance and sing

to see herself tonight.

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