Anticipating Anonymity
(after the style of John Keats' “When I have Fears That I May Cease to Be”)

When I expire, as all life has and will
through ages past and eons yet to come,
will I have shown the least creative skill
in leaving to Oblivion a crumb
of evidence that I had ever known
a son’s devotion or a father’s pride;
or had, in any verse construction, shown
homage to masters’ works that haven’t died.
“In water,” Keats proposed his name be writ:
a drink his fame refuses to imbibe.
And so, posterity, should you see fit,
I’d take it kindly if you would describe
in marble, bronze, or granite as you please
my name as written on a passing breeze.

Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright © 2024