A Dead City

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A Dead City  (1912) 
by Clark Ashton Smith
1912.

Twilight ascends the abandoned ramps of noon
Within an ancient land, whose after-time
Unfathomably shadows its ruined prime.
Like rising mist the night increases soon
Round shattered palaces, ere yet the moon
On mute, unsentried walls and turrets climb,
And touch with pallor of sepulchral rime
The desert where a city's bones are strewn.

She comes at last: unsepultured, they show
In all the hoary starkness of old stone.
From out a shadow like the lips of Death
Issues a wind, that through the ruins blown,
Cries like a prophet's ghost, with waiting breath,
The weirds of finished and forgotten woe.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1961, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.