Hilbert, We Hardly Knew Ye

John, a splendid send off. But isn’t Tennyson’s “In Memoriam” stanza ABBA?

Oh yet we trust that somehow good

   Will be the final goal of ill,

   To freaks nature, snits of will,

Defects of water, lack of food;

That none walk with four aimless feet,

   That not one life shall be destroyed,

   Or cast as rubbish to the void,

When Hamster makes his pile complete.

That not a seed is cloven in vain,

   That not a tooth with vain desire

   Is nicked against the cage’s wire,

Or but subserves another’s gain…. 

Richard Brookhiser — Historian Richard Brookhiser is a senior editor of National Review and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.