Death at rest seemed not a threat.
We were lunching at an outdoor stand.
“Look here,” he said, “you shouldn’t fret”
He gestured with his hot dog, smiled
With that everlasting grin. “Don’t make it over grand.
As Yeats remarked, ’Things fall apart.’
You get a bit of life. Why have regret?
Enjoy it while you can. I play my part.
I take the outworn pieces and recycle.
Nothing sinister about all that!
So many people tremble through their lives,
Sweat at non-existence, mumble frights
Out of naïve fantasy.” Death licked a fleck of chives
From his lower jaw. “They spend sweaty nights
Yearning for eternity. Pfaw! We all disappear.
When that final dog and frog and paramecium
Has had its day, the last snail fallen from its shell,
Never fear. In that end time year
I will disappear as well.”