James H. Smith

MISSING MAN

I sit and watch as time grows old, as the moon smiles in its ageless knowing ways
upon man who vanishes almost before they are begun.
“I am the smartest – all there is;” say man, “I am the best, the most; nothing can match me.”
Then gone – back to dust, to the waters, to the wind, no longer under the sun.
And guess upon guess – he is gone so no one is left to sing his praise.
His fires are gone, his roads crumble, even his memory has ended its run,
And yet the rivers still flow, clouds still dance across the sky with the wind,
green of spring still pushes its way past winter frost, flowers bloom beneath yellow sun.
But man, the greatest, the most, the best is gone; his memories, his foot prints disappear.
Perhaps – just perhaps he was the smallest of them all, once war begun