An Old Engraving

The one-year-old baby is crawling among skulls,
   Eye-sockets handled, rounded cranium
Cradled in two fat arms: the hollowness of bone
   Makes light of mortality and its weight.
An infant hand can move a skull, yet cannot budge
   A full head, can sport in the bony holes
But could not bear the contained heaviness of thought.
   Which of these is toying with the other—
The child, with unread emblems it will grow into
   Knowing? The wise old image, with its doll?
At our dear, silly games we are the playthings of
   Bone dice we don’t know that we’ve betted on.