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The bone that has no marrow;

by Emily Dickinson, 1896

The bone that has no marrow;
  What ultimate for that?
It is not fit for table,
  For beggar, or for cat.

A bone has obligations,
  A being has the same;
A marrowless assembly
  Is culpabler than shame.

But how shall finished creatures
  A function fresh obtain? —
Old Nicodemus' phantom
  Confronting us again!

Published in Poems by Emily Dickinson: Third Series

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