Despair

I am writing two letters I know I’ll destroy,
   I am fashioning purposeless lists,
Grown wise at the feintings our scruples deploy
   To keep us from slitting our wrists.

I am fondling objects that soon I shall lose,
   And dusting off books on their shelves,
I am haunting the hedgerows and sharing my news
   With creatures more wise than ourselves. 

I am reckoning assets, (such things must be done),
   And planning the best for the worst,
If my wishes were horses, I’d choose just the one —
   To bear off my mother’s life first.

I am heart-sick for lovers, for friends who will mourn,
   I have given my dog to a friend,
I am bracing to bear what I know must be borne,
   Though I fear I shall break at the end.
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