Tristram of Lyonesse and Other Poems


The Many

Algernon Charles Swinburne

GREENE, garlanded with February’s few flowers,
    Ere March came in with Marlowe’s rapturous rage:
    Peele, from whose hand the sweet white locks of age
Took the mild chaplet woven of honoured hours:
Nash, laughing hard: Lodge, flushed from lyric bowers:
    And Lilly, a goldfinch in a twisted cage
    Fed by some gay great lady’s pettish page
Till short sweet songs gush clear like short spring showers
Kid, whose grim sport still gambolled over graves:
    And Chettle, in whose fresh funereal verse
    Weeps Marian yet on Robin’s wildwood hearse:
Cooke, whose light boat of song one soft breath saves,
    Sighed from a maiden’s amorous mouth averse:
Live likewise ye: Time takes not you for slaves.



Haughton, whose mirth gave woman all her will:
    Field, bright and loud with laughing flower and bird
    And keen alternate notes of laud and gird:
Barnes, darkening once with Borgia’s deeds the quill
Which tuned the passion of Parthenophil:
    Blithe burly Porter, broad and bold of word:
    Wilkins, a voice with strenuous pity stirred:
Turk Mason: Brewer, whose tongue drops honey still
Rough Rowley, handling song with Esau’s hand:
    Light Nabbes: lean Sharpham, rank and raw by turns,
    But fragrant with a forethought once of Burns:
Soft Davenport, sad-robed, but blithe and bland:
    Brome, gipsy-led across the woodland ferns:
Praise be with all, and place among our band.

Back    |    Words Home    |    Algernon Charles Swinburne Home    |    Site Info.    |    Feedback