Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
Knight Falstaff
By Louise Imogen Guiney (1861–1920)
I SAW the dusty curtain, ages old,
Its purple tatters twitched aside, and lo!
The fourth King Harry’s reign in lusty show
Behind, its deeds in living file outrolled
Of peace and war; some sage, some mad, and bold:        5
Last, near a tree, a bridled neighing row
With latest spoils encumbered, saints do know,
By Hal and Hal’s boon cronies; on the wold
Laughter of prince and commons; there and here
Travelers fleeing; drunken thieves that sang;        10
Wild bells; a tavern’s echoing jolly shout;
Signals along the highway, full of cheer;
A gate that closed with not incautious clang,
When that sweet rogue, bad Jack! came lumbering out.

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