“A Guest” by Ambrose Bierce

Ambrose Bierce’s Birthday:
Bierce regards Death with fine, sarcastic, suppurating contempt.
-The Voice before the Void

“A Guest”

Ambrose Bierce

Death, are you well? I trust you have no cough
That’s painful or in any way annoying—
No kidney trouble that may carry you off,
Or heart disease to keep you from enjoying
Your meals—and ours. ‘T were very sad indeed
To have to quit the busy life you lead.

You’ve been quite active lately for so old
A person, and not very strong-appearing.
I’m apprehensive, somehow, that my bold,
Bad brother gave you trouble in the spearing.
And my two friends—I fear, sir, that you ran
Quite hard for them, especially the man.

I crave your pardon: ’twas no fault of mine;
If you are overworked I’m sorry, very.
Come in, old man, and have a glass of wine.
What shall it be—Marsala, Port or Sherry?
What! just a mug of blood? That’s funny grog
To ask a friend for, eh? Well, take it, hog!