Aug 272011
 

What has life's bitter disappointment brought
Laid in a narrow, breathless bed?
Shall we curse all our drunken, muddy lot
Lain with long bones of the dead?

At the end of a rifle or parting stream
Pursued by a pursuing dream
Man wakes up to find his enemies again,
The end of dreams, and all friends dead.

What stays hid in the marrow there,
Thrust deep underground?
Things purposed in the unpurposed air
Die when those men are dead.

Whether father or brother still pursue
Their work, or others' work, I do not know;
I read it on a narrow, upright stone
Cast by the long bones of the dead.

Fathers sacrifice long-loving sons
To a nameless, breathless bed;
Stand we under an island sun
Or lie with long bones of the dead?

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