Robert Francis

            Simple Death

It is a little thing to die.
A little thing it is to lie
Down on a common bed and die.
There need be no wide watchful sky
To watch one die, nor human eye.
No inauspicious bird need cry
At death, nor flying need it fly
Otherwise than birds fly
Whether or not some man will die.
No man about to die need try
To die or wonder how or why
Or say a prayer or say good-bye
Or even know that he will die.

Robert Francis, Robert Francis: Collected
Poems, 1936-1976, University of
Massachusetts Press, 1985.