[The bread has become moldy]

The bread has become moldy
and the dates blown down by the wind;
the iron has slipped from the helve.
The wool was to by dyed red
but the dyer dyed it black.

The dead woman has forgotten her comb
and tube of eye-paint;
the dead cobbler has forgotten his knife,
the dead butcher his chopper,
and the dead carpenter his adze.

A goat can be driven off with a shout.
But where is the man to shout?
The bricks pile up, the laths are trimmed,
and the beams are ready. Where is the builder?

To be buried in a linen shroud
or in a matting of reeds —
but where are the dead of the Flood
and where the dead of Nebuchadnezzar?