A Thought for Mrs. Buck

You left this good earth
Long before I noticed your absence,
But your epitaphs are everywhere,
Veritable cenotaphs,
Who never contrived these
Outpouring self – monuments,
Illuminating books and readers
All the time in pages of grandeur.

The pen that sketched variegated life
Through peasants’ tales in old China
Showed more hues than a painter’s brush
On a still canvas against the morning sun.
A heart so mellow with pity,
Yet not mawkish or timid
Swelled up in probing lines
Bespeaking profundity of art.

Who could have ignored you,
Titanic in exploring the world,
Fecund in re – creating its shapes,
But relaxed with quietude amidst the storm?
Putting pen to thought
Was a brilliant exercise
In which you excelled your peers
When the jinn of truth found his release.

These old fashioned lines
Are but a weak tribute
From a bird on a migrant shore
Watching a glorious predecessor soar.


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