Worst agony, dementia, have an end.
They breathe out at the end, a pleasing sigh.
It’s right we’re glad when friends attended die
that gladness is our duty as their friend.
Not that they’ve gone to some transcendent place
That sugar comfort’s bitter on our tongue
even when hardest, when they died so young
they had no mark of trouble on their face.
Ripeness is all, ripeness the best they get.
Some years of work completed that might last.
A present love holding their weak hand fast
Touch last good sense through agony and sweat –
Sharp severance from pain, a mercy knife,
is death, which is not an event in life.