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The Fate of the Earnest

So many old lovers,
so many faithful enemies,
so much of the kindness
with time enough;

so much of the meanness
with fire enough,
so many earnest friends,
cousins close and far,
have folded or passed away
or into oblivion:

fishing in dumpsters or
toiling in anonymity
for resolute pussiant Hitlers
or dottering off
to drool in institutions
where they stare out windows
into the loneliness
of splendor remembered
or teeter on the edge of the world
in the bone China frailty
of forgetting.

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