Poemsby Emily Dickinson

XXI

 If anybody's friend be dead, It 's sharpest of the theme The thinking how they walked alive, At such and such a time. 
 Their costume, of a Sunday, Some manner of the hair, - A prank nobody knew but them, Lost, in the sepulchre. 
 How warm they were on such a day: You almost feel the date, So short way off it seems; and now, They 're centuries from that. 
 How pleased they were at what you said; You try to touch the smile, And dip your fingers in the frost: When was it, can you tell, 
 You asked the company to tea, Acquaintance, just a few, And chatted close with this grand thing That don't remember you? 
 Past bows and invitations, Past interview, and vow, Past what ourselves can estimate, - That makes the quick of woe!