When the fog of grief and dumb despair
roll in from desolate wastelands beyond
the mind's trench, vainly our atrophied
organs twitch, struggling soldierly
to maneuver the semaphores of handbook reaction;
falling by line to the deadly cloud.
Sense and communication dim
as the unmeaning sky is fastened shut.
The rushing voices / dying feet /
the loud mud struggles and orders echo
intent upon distant execution.
Naked telephones natter impotently.
The great gun gives silent sentence.
Gently quietly innocently but surely
Peace with muffled tread is ushered in:
in a land of gloom with a Madonna-gold sky.
22 April 1967