Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1835–1860
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vols. VI–VIII: Literature of the Republic, Part III., 1835–1860
 
Sonnet: ‘Men change,—that heaven above not more’
By William Ellery Channing (1818–1901)
 
[From Poems. 1843.—Poems. Second Series. 1847.]

MEN change,—that heaven above not more,
Which now with white clouds is all beautiful,
Soon is with gray mists a poor creature dull;
Thus, in this human theatre, actions pour
Like slight waves on a melancholy shore;        5
Nothing is fixed, the human heart is null,
’Tis taught by scholars, ’tis rehearsed in lore;
Methinks this human heart might well be o’er.
O precious pomp of eterne vanity!
O false fool world! whose actions are a race        10
Of monstrous puppets; I can’t form one plea
Why any man should wear a smiling face.
World! thou art one green sepulchre to me,
Through which, mid clouds of dust, slowly I pace.
 
 
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