These marble stones the mosses mar
Lie dormant above the earth.
They tell us who these mute folk are
With blurred inscriptions of their birth.
Many there are with forgotten names
And there is no one to remember
The tenuous hold that kinship claims
To any living family member.
No visitors come to dress the stones
Or give them any passing thought.
To this silent field of long unknowns
Neither flowers nor wreaths are brought.
But someone must have called on a friend
That then had recently passed away-
They planted a bush to mark the end
Of their temporary earthly stay.
Long ago it was a panoply
With many fragrant flowers to dangle;
Now fronds drape down in a canopy
That is a jumbled leafy tangle.
It all but obscures the marker stone
As for years it has been neglected,
And now has become too overgrown
And denies the attention once affected.
This bush, like the friend that was thought of,
Has fallen from out of the mind,
And though surely it was planted in love,
It’s just as surely been forgotten in time.