How to measure black decay
That sweeps through pavement on its way
To deaden, leaden, render gray
The reflux altar where we pray?

How to measure, judge or weigh
The bulk of flesh that we, the prey,
Must, on this surrender day,
Rip out, yield up and grant away?

What to do? What to say?
I ask you, friend, please find a way
To force the tender skin to stay,
To keep the hidden beast at bay.