To The Mercy Killers by Dudley Randall
If ever mercy move you murder me,
I pray you, kindly killers, let me live.
Never conspire with death to set me free,
but let me know such life as pain can give..
Even though I be a clot, an aching clench,
a stub, a stump, a butt, a scab, a knob,
a screaming pain, a putrefying stench,
still let me live, so long as life shall throb.
Even though I turn such traitor to myself
as beg to die, do not accomplice me.
Even though I seem no human, mute shelf
of glucose, bottled blood, machinery
to swell the lung and pump the heart–even so,
do not put out my life. Let me still glow.