Verse > Anthologies > James and Mary Ford, eds. > Every Day in the Year
James and Mary Ford, eds.  Every Day in the Year.  1902.
January 10
By William Wordsworth (1770–1850)
          William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury, was the son of poor parents, and rose by his own ability to the primacy. He was a staunch supporter of Charles I. in all ecclesiastic matters and after the death of the King was impeached by the Long Parliament and beheaded on Tower Hill. He died Jan. 10, 1645.

PREJUDGED by foes determined not to spare,
An old weak Man for vengeance thrown aside,
Laud, “in the painful art of dying” tried,
(Like a poor bird entangled in a snare
Whose heart still flutters, though his wings forbear        5
To stir in useless struggles) hath relied
On hope that conscious innocence supplied,
And in his prison breathes celestial air
Why tarries then thy chariot? Wherefore stay,
O Death! the ensanguined yet triumphant wheels,        10
Which thou prepar’st, full often, to convey
(What time a State with madding faction reels)
The Saint or Patriot to the world that heals
All wounds, all perturbations doth allay?

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