Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. I. Chaucer to Donne
Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. I. Early Poetry: Chaucer to Donne
To Everlasting Oblivion
By John Marston (1575?–1634)
THOU mighty gulf, insatiate cormorant!
Deride me not, though I seem petulant
  To fall into thy chops. Let others pray
  For ever their fair poems flourish may,
But as for me, hungry Oblivion        5
Devour me quick. Accept my orison,
  My earnest prayers, which do importune thee
  With gloomy shade of thy still empery
  To veil both me and my rude poesy.
Far worthier lines, in silence of thy state,        10
Do sleep securely, free from love or hate;
From which this living ne’er can be exempt,
But whilst it breathes, will hate and fury tempt.
Then close his eyes with thy all-dimming hand,
Which not right-glorious actions can withstand;        15
Peace, hateful tongues; I now in silence pace,
Unless some hound do wake me from my place.
  I with this sharp, yet well-meant poesy
  Will sleep secure, right free from injury
  Of cankered hate, or rankest villainy.        20

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